Would batteries still have a place in this brave new hydrogen world? And what about fuel cells? We always see in the media the yoking together of hydrogen and fuel cells – is there a reason for this?

 

As for batteries, yes, we will always need them in some form or another, but only on a comparatively small scale – they simply don’t “scale up” to the capacity which our society needs for town supply or for industry, or even for heavy transport – and certainly not for aviation.

But fuel cells are a different matter – a key component of a hydrogen-driven society. They are not storage devices, as is often thought, but function as engines – very quiet engines, without pistons or any other kind of mechanical clatter, simply converting incoming, carefully dosed, hydrogen into the electricity needed by the immediate circumstances – lighting, feeding a local grid, powering a car, driving the innumerable motors without which industry cannot function.

 

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