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View Diary: Recent DOE Break-Through with Hydrogen Fuel Cells, should make them Affordable (275 comments)

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  •  The whole platinum thing is a carnard. (0+ / 0-)

    Platinum has been used in catalytic converters on gasoline operated vehicles for pollution abatement for decades.  No telling how much of the stuff is sitting in automobile graveyards.  No reason not to use it in fuel cells, except that then the gas and oil people would have to figure out a new way to make money.

    •  No it is not (8+ / 0-)

      It's kinda like gold: tiny amounts of gold are used in some electronics. That doesn't mean that gold is cheap and readily available; it means that TINY amounts of gold are used.

      In the same manner, the amount of platinum used in catalytic converters is far less than what is needed for fuel cells.

      •  You're right about the amount of platinum (1+ / 0-)
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        required being greater for fuel cell production than for catalytic converters.  But for decades, there was very little recycling of platinum from catalytic converters.  It went to auto graveyards with the car it was attached to.  It is projected to be much easier to recycle platinum from a fuel cell than from a catalytic converter.  Also, it will have to be deternimed whether there is enough platinum in the ground and whether mining companies can ramp up production to meet the need.  I think some studies have been done, and it is projected that there is enough platinum in the ground.  Ramping up production is another matter.  But FCEVs won't all come on line at the same time, so there is time to do this, if there is the will.

        But my point was that there was little if any motivation to do this for a fuel source that would replace gasoline completely, and cut deeply into the bottom line of oil/gas people.  The common man knows that platinum is a precious metal, and very expensive.  So this argument that fuel cells are too expensive because of the need for platinum is an excuse that makes sense to someone on the simplest level.  And that, to me, is a carnard.


        •  OK, a canard, but a vanishing one (2+ / 0-)
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          WiddieDawg, jamess

          I understand and accept your reasoning now. However, the discoveries described in the diary render it moot now. With the cost of platinum removed from the overall cost-benefit analysis, we don't need to worry about it.

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