Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsEngineering · 1 decade ago

Hydrogen combustion.?

If you can run an internal combustion engine on propane gas why can't you run it on hydrogen gas?

4 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    You can. Almost every manufacturer has a hydrogen car on the drwing board or a prototype built.

    The problem with gaseous fuels is lack of energy density.

    Gasoline and diesel are the best because it has a lot of energy in a certain volume (like cylinder volume) . But you put propane in that same cylinder and you get about 10 % less power out of that cylinder because there is less carbons and hydrogens in propane than in gasoline for the same volume.

    Try to run a car on natural gas (methane) and it is another 5-10% less power because natural gas is CH4 and propane is C3H8 , so there is less carbons and hydrogens in that cylinder.

    Now you get to hydrogen, which has a lot of power per kilogram, which is great for rocket engines, but in internal combustion motors you have a fixed volume in the cylinder and you got to mix hydrogen with air so you can't pack much energy in that little cylinder.

    So hydrogen cars just don't have much power unless they use the biggest V-6's and V-8's to get some cubic inches of volume capacity for burning that hydrogen. A motor that gets 300 hp on gasoline might only get 180 hp on hydrogen

  • Ronald
    Lv 4
    6 years ago

    Understand process of combustion of hydrogen gas. click on the link to Watch the VIDEO explanation:

    To prove the property of combustion of hydrogen we need to prepare of hydrogen gas in the laboratory. Zinc granules are taken in a woulf's bottle and the apparatus is arranged as shown here. Dilute Sulphuric acid is dropped into the woulf's bottle through the thistle funnel. Hydrogen gas evolved is pass through U-tube containing calcium chloride. Calcium chloride absorbs the moisture present in Hydrogen. Now what happen when a glowing splinter is brought near the gas coming out through the tube. The gas burns with a pale blue flame with a pop sound. Arrange a setup for circulating cold water. Bring this flame near the flak in which cold water is constantly circulated. Some water droplets are collected at the upper of the flask. This experiment shows that water is formed when hydrogen is burnt in air.

  • 1 decade ago

    yes you can...but the problem is the cost: The energy to produce pure hydrogen from electrolysis of water is higher than the energy produced by its combustion. It's not really an efficient way to produce energy.

  • 1 decade ago

    Actually, you can. I think BMW is working on a car like that.

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