We've seen our fair share of hydrogen cars here on Treehugger. Some, such as Honda's FCX Clarity, GM's Equinox Fuel Cell Crossover and BMW's Hydrogen 7 are production ready (which does NOT mean they are being mass-produced!). Others, including the Cadillac Provoq, GM Sequel and Ford Airstream are merely concept cars. And, of course, this stream of limited-production and concept vehicles is rendered moot by the fact that the hydrogen infrastructure is not yet in place. As a result, there are plenty of people that doubt hydrogen vehicles will become viable in the near-term, and their doubts are not entirely unfounded. So while waiting for that vaunted renewable, hydrogen economy to come along, we've seen some neat hydrogen toy cars fill the void. The H-Racer and Discovery's Hydrogen Car are two such examples.
But now a new contender has stepped in to warm the hearts of kids and geeks everywhere. It's called the H2GO, and it was recently unveiled at the Nuremburg Toy Fair.The great thing about these kinds of toys is that they get beyond "the rhetoric on this issue and get kids excited about it," according to Andrew Revkin. Here's how it works:
The basic energy source is a solar panel that both charges the radio-control unit and provides the electricity to split water into hydrogen and oxygen in a little fueling station. The hydrogen fills a tiny bladder inside the car as needed. The hydrogen there generates a flow of electricity sufficient to power the car for about 5 minutes, according to Corgi International, the manufacturer. That’s shorter than the 15 minutes a typical battery-powered toy like this runs. But Corgi says the H2GO simply pops back over to the filling station for an immediate fill-up, while toys with batteries have to be recharged.
So are toys like this going to speed up the coming of the hydrogen economy? Eh, probably not. But they sure are neat gadgets that, aside from being fun for kids, are also educational, which is more than can be said for many of the toys kids play with today.
See Also: ::A2: The Hydrogen-Powered Hypersonic Airliner, ::Hydrogen Buses for Football Fans at the FIFA World Cup in Berlin, ::E.Coli: The Next Big Source of Hydrogen Fuel? and ::Sweet! The Chocolate-Powered Hydrogen Fuel Cell