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Go Back   WakeWorld > >> Boats, Accessories & Tow Vehicles Archive > Archive through March 15, 2006

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Old    Phatboypimp (phatboypimp)      Join Date: Apr 2005       02-14-2006, 2:58 PM Reply   
With all the hype around hybrid (gas and electric) motors in cars, trucks and SUV's, what do you think about a hybrid powered wakeboard/ski boat? Pro's? Con's?
Old    JCrave (s4inor)      Join Date: Mar 2002       02-14-2006, 3:47 PM Reply   
We had this discussion on WSR a while ago, and a good point was brought up; Hybrids gain their advantage around town when kinetic energy (motion) is transferred to potential energy (charge stored in batteries). That's why their millage around town is usually dratically better than a similar IC counterpart, but on the highway there isn't much difference.

In a boat, you would almost never realize those energy saving gains, so the resulting increase in millage will be almost zero, and definitely not enough to offset the weight of the battery or the cost of the technology.

You can read that thread on WakesideRides.

That's the same reason that hybrids will be a short lived technology. Eventually the media, and consumers alike will realize that there are much more effective and well thought out solutions.
Old    Show (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-14-2006, 5:39 PM Reply   
Jason right, Hybirds donít make sense for boats, thereís really no chance for energy recovery.

Hybird cars are a stepping stone to fuel cell cars. Give it about 5 to 10 years and you'll see fuel cell cars around town. There are a few fuel cell fleets now and one test case consumer in California, the Spalino family. The Spalino family, in LA, took delivery of the first consumer Honda FCX fuel cell car, a test case. I doubt anyone but the US navy is interested in putting fuel cells on boats. Fuel cells are more efficient than IC engines but are way to expensive to put on boats.

If your interested in alternative energy read about the California fuel cell partnership here: http://www.fuelcellpartnership.org/faq.html

(Message edited by Bigshow on February 14, 2006)
Old    eric fox (fox)      Join Date: Jul 2002       02-15-2006, 8:24 AM Reply   
The Navy has nuclear power...I doubt they are really interested in fuel cells either.
Old    Renee V (litlone873)      Join Date: Jan 2005       02-15-2006, 10:30 AM Reply   
It's funny that you should mention the California Fuel Cell Partnership... my company built and owns that building. I manage it. How did you hear about it being from Ohio?

It is a very fasinating facility both structurally, and technically. I will have to bug them about fuel cells boats.

Old    bocephus            02-15-2006, 10:46 AM Reply   
Uhh, GM has had fuel cell cars testing for about 7 years. I use to drive them around the track at the GM proving grounds on Ellsworth and Elliot in Mesa Arizona as a college job. I use to drive for 24 hours straight, had to pee through a tube and all. I know for a fact that several execs drive fuel cell vans to work every day and have been doing so for about 5 years. I have also seen a fuel cell SSR that the area manager drove.
Old    Show (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-15-2006, 11:20 AM Reply   
I was at the 2005 fuel cell conference in Pasadena, and the previous one in San Antonio in 2004. The fuel cell partnership is one organization helping to pave the way for moving 1800s technology to practical use.

GM along in cooperation Ballard Tech are among many other automotive companies demonstrating automotive fuel cell applications. Several companies have fielded small fleets of fuel cell cars. Only Honda has put one in a consumerís hands. Letting executive drive the company prototype around is different than handing the keys over to the family down the street, donít you agree? IMO GM lags in hybrid technology and they appear to also lag in the fuel cell race.

The Navy has nuclear power on a larger vessels, they also have diesel powered ships, diesel powered subs, jets skis, and a bet they have a few row boats and canoes too.
Old    Scot M Berner (scottyb)      Join Date: Sep 2002       02-15-2006, 11:31 AM Reply   
Dont you think that boats could utilize some type of regenative turbine that turns as the boats slow down.
Old    Show (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-15-2006, 11:54 AM Reply   
No
Old    bocephus            02-15-2006, 12:27 PM Reply   
What? GM is the only car company to actually have four differant fully functional models. They are also the #1 investor in Fuel Cell and Hydrogen services. They started with the hydrogen cars about 10 years ago and have a fully functional platform with drive by wire. GM has decided to keep much of the information and technology private, they already learned that lesson. Just because GM is not fully participating with other manufacturers doesn't mean they don't have the tech. Have you ever read an SAE publication? I used to work for Hughes in Golita, CA before I moved to Tempe, AZ and decided to get my masters.
Old    Show (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-15-2006, 1:14 PM Reply   
GM has succeeded if that's spending more money than anyone else. I bet they are not the first to sell 1000 vehicles in the US to consumers like you, I, or the guy down the street.

What counts as a functioning model? Is it one I can buy? They've been adapting an Opel chassis for fuel cells, seems to be the latest.

Note my current vehicle and well as my last two are Chevys.
Old    bocephus            02-15-2006, 1:23 PM Reply   
They have the "skateboard chasis" ready to go, it's drive by wire which has yet to be approved by the VSB for sale in the US. From what I have read the opel chasis is for testing purposes. They can put just about any body on the skateboard chasis they want. GM also has fuel cell vehicles actively operating in the 5th mountain division of the US military. It's a diesel/hydrogen combo with a couple running around with fuel cells instead of straight hydrogen.
Old    Renee V (litlone873)      Join Date: Jan 2005       02-15-2006, 5:18 PM Reply   
I forwarded this thread on to a couple of people at the Partnership and asked them to get a move on with hybrid/fuel fell engines for boats. One of their responses was:

"The hybrid is already here. It involves a pair of oars, a strong rower and a conventional gasoline engine. Runs on a mix of gasoline and muesli bars."

Cracked me up!
Old    Show (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-15-2006, 6:26 PM Reply   
Jed, I hear what you're saying, the whole skate board thing is a cool idea, but as you point out not yet ready for prime time. Every year since about 1950 someone has said that fuel cells will power cars in 5 to 10 years, I think they're still saying it, though I think they're getting close now.

Reneee, isnít great to hear from someone with a good sense of humor!
Old    Renee V (litlone873)      Join Date: Jan 2005       02-15-2006, 6:54 PM Reply   
If either of you are ever in Northern California and would like to tour the facility, I could help you out. They have public tours once a month. There are usually several cars on hand that you can look at and even test drive. Currently they have one in the gallery that has been "sawed in half" so you can see the guts. It's pretty cool.

There are several automakers involved including GM, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, DaimlerCHrysler, Toyota, Nissan and VW. Also involved is Ballard as well as a bunch of fuel providers like Shell, BP, ChevronTexaco etc... Of course, the State of California is heading up the project.
Old    Show (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-15-2006, 8:03 PM Reply   
Renee, that would be cool but my work hasn't given me an opportunity to get out that way for quite a while.

The California hydrogen highway is a real pace setting thing, especially after the Presidents State of the Union address.
Old    Renee V (litlone873)      Join Date: Jan 2005       02-16-2006, 10:04 AM Reply   
Another response for someone at the Partnership:

"Actually in Germany they have several fuel cell powered submarines (several of which are being built for the Israelis as well) and a fuel cell powered sail boat. In Australia, there is another fuel cell powered boat (although thatís about all the detail I know). And here in California, Anuvu (local Sac outfit) teamed with Duffy boats to make a fuel cell powered boat down in Long Beach I believe. Thatís the extent of my knowledge on marine fuel cell applications"

Old    "G" (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       02-16-2006, 10:20 AM Reply   
I think a Clean Fuel boat would be awesome. I would switch over just for the fact that you woulnt be poluting the water ect. I would just hate to invest in the early versons that will most likely suck untill they get the bug's worked out. Im glad GM is leading the pack with the Skateboard fuel cell car. IMO if we could get off the "Oil ***" this country would be way better off. I would be willing to make the change.
Old    Show (bigshow)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-16-2006, 4:44 PM Reply   
The clean fuel thing is trickier than you think. Ask where will all of the hydrogen come from? Unless we build nuk plants you have to burn fossil fuels to make hydrogen. So what you're doing is making your tail pipe longer.
Old    Jon Barton (chevboy171)      Join Date: Feb 2005       02-16-2006, 5:16 PM Reply   
Edward, I'm glad you made that point about where hydrogen comes from. It seems like everyone's impression of fuel cells and hydrogen is that they're the "wonder fuel" when in fact the energy still has to come from somewhere, and unless we generate our energy from something besides coal (ie. hydro, wind, solar, or nuclear). A fuel cell vehicle is still polluting just as much as gasoline.
Old    Renee V (litlone873)      Join Date: Jan 2005       02-23-2006, 3:15 PM Reply   
I just got the latest newsletter from the California Fuel Cell Partnership. Here is the link to it in case anyone is interested in seeing what's happening out there.

http://www.cafcp.org/newsletters/public/newsletter_2006_02__20.htm

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