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Essay on The Hydrogen Fuel Cell and the Electric Car

Assignment id 1002993
Discipline Biology
Assignment type Essay
Words 3106
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The electric vehicle has been around since the 1830s, eventually transitioned into a practical transport option from the late 1800s after advancements in the storage capacity of batteries. The electric car was at the peak of its popularity in the early 1990s. However, its popularity was short lived; by 1935 the electric car was now a rarity, being replaced with the gas-powered vehicles. Reasons for the shift being that the electrical car couldn't travel long distances without recharging due to the limited storage capabilities of batteries, it was quicker to fuel a petrol car compared to recharge an electric vehicle, and lastly, the mass production of the petrol car lowered its cost significantly compared to the electric vehicle. Present day, the conventional gas powered vehicle is still favored over electric cars, but improvements in hydrogen fuel cell technology are making the choice of owning a hydrogen fuel cell powered automobile more of an opportunity in addition to highlighting the advantages of other electrical cars. In the following paragraphs the operation of the Ballard fuel cell is clarified, the challenges with implementing a fuel cell process is discussed and last, the possible social and environmental effects of electric cars are explored. The fuel cell manufactured by Ballard Power Systems is fuel cell which needs hydrogen and oxygen to create electricity. The fuel cell itself includes two flow field plates, and two thin sheets of catalysts with a Polymer Electrolyte Membrane or Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) between (see Figure 1). The hydrogen is fed in through 1 plate and oxygen accumulated from the atmosphere in another вЂ" on both sides of the membrane. Of both electrodes on is the anode and the other one is the cathode. The hydrogen reaches the ano...

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