Bernama Nov 9/ 2009
KUALA LUMPUR-- The government is carrying out research to study the use hydrogen for the production of electricity and to be used as a fuel source for the automotive industry, the Dewan Rakyat was told on Monday.
Deputy minister of Science, Technology and Innovations Fadillah Yusof said a study known as Hydrogen powered engine, hydrogen generation and diesel engine efficiency enhancement was being carried out to determine its use for static engines like generators to produce electricity and for engines used by fishermen for their boats.
“The first test had shown that the use of Hydrogen can help reduce the dependence on diesel by 25 percent. The project, being carried out through a RM1.489 million allocation that was approved in 2008, is expected to be completed by next year,” said Fadillah when answering a question by Dr Mohd Hayati Othman (PAS-Pendang) who wanted to know the development in efforts to use water as an alternative energy source.
Fadillah also said that the new technology being studied was to separate the Hydrogen and Oxygen atoms from the water then use of Hydrogen gas to reduce the use of diesel energy.
He added that however, a prototype car using energy from water, cannot be developed into a commercial scale due to certain constraints that need to be addressed and studied carefully.
“Among the constraints are the storage system for the hydrogen, plus the production and distribution of Hydrogen for vehicles using hydro-fuel.
“It also involves the setting up of standards and infrastructure for vehicles using hydro-fuel and the electric system that can be used for hybrid vehicles,” said Fadillah.
Fadillah added that similar obstacles were also faced by countries like the United States and Europe.
“We must first overcome the obstacles before hydro-fuel can be widely used.
Hydrogen is the most versatile of renewable energy resources — a universal fuel that can be burned in an engine or used in a fuel cell to power vehicles, utility power plants and anything else that uses electrical energy. It will eliminate our dependence on other energy source,” he said.
When burned in an engine, hydrogen is about 30 percent more efficient than gasoline and when a fuel cell is used to power a vehicle, the fuel cell is 100 percent to 200 percent more efficient than gasoline.
Hydrogen engines do not emit carbon dioxide, and the only byproduct of fuel cells is clean water.