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Fuel Cell Powered Submarine

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by YachtForums, Nov 20, 2003.

  1. YachtForums

    YachtForums Administrator

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    Copied from USA Today article...

    'World's first' fuel-cell submarine surfaces
    BERLIN (AP) — Germany's biggest shipbuilder, Howaldtswerke Deutsche Werft, on Monday unveiled what it described as the world's first submarine to be powered by fuel-cell technology. The submarine, the first of four in the company's new 212A class being built for the German navy, was launched from the company's shipyard in the northern city of Kiel for testing in the Baltic Sea.

    The hydrogen-powered fuel-cell vessel is expected to head for Norway in July for deep-water testing, before returning to Kiel next March for final fitting and delivery. The technology is designed to cut out noise and emissions.

    The shipbuilder HDW is a leading manufacturer of non-nuclear military submarines. The company, which also builds ferries, large yachts and specialist vessels, is increasingly concentrating on smaller, high-tech craft, and said last month that it would cut about 750 of its 3,400 domestic staff by May 2004 as part of that drive.

    One Equity Partners, an investment firm backed by Chicago-based Bank One, took control of the company last year.
  2. David Tether

    David Tether New Member

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    Ownership by Bank One

    Absolutely amazine...the worlds largest boat builder in Germany is owned by Bank One of Chicago....the first fuel celled submarine......why don't they invest in the US ship builders? Don't they know that if they kept the money in America that the US companies could be making these groundbreaking advances....is this the way that we steal technology...with capitalism?
  3. "Don't they know that if they kept the money in America that the US companies could be making these groundbreaking advances....is this the way that we steal technology...with capitalism?"


    The U.S. is much too busy playing with their toys in the sand. Besides, can't beat German engineering.
  4. David Tether

    David Tether New Member

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    Playing in the Sand

    Actually....we do spend a lot of time turning sand into glass and IC chips....and German engineering is good....that is why Americans are so good at it too....there is a lot of German in most of us. However, today Germany is mostly known for overengineering. And didn't fuel cells come from Canada and the US Space Program...and why hydrogen any way...there won't be any hydrogen distribution channels or large production until the Oil companies figure out how to own it. I mean, really, there are twenty good companies building fuel cells, Ballard being the largest, and mostly just sitting on there bunns until hydrogen is available at the local fuel station. Do ya think that will happen anytime soon.....of course on a $80M submarine they can make their own with an electrolizer...ooh...but I am involved in that too....with the HaveBlue boat....but then I have a lot of German in me.
  5. YachtForums

    YachtForums Administrator

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    Hi David,

    I agree that until such time as a hydrogen re-fueling infrastructure is in place, it may take some time before the masses dock their fossil fuel burners. However, the delivery of hydrogen may not take the usual channels (as we've come to know them).

    There are several technologies on the horizon for the production of hydrogen at home, including a solar collecter and concentrator, similiar to a satellite dish that uses mirror-like reflectors to focus the suns heat on a central collector creating sufficient heat to extract hydrogen from water.

    In addition, Honda Motor Company has committed more financial resources to developing a home based hydrogen generator than any other technology in the history of the company. Home generators could also produce sufficient power to feed excess power back to the electrical grid (co-generation), thus further reducing our dependency on oil and nuclear energy.

    I think Fuel Cell powered devices will make their way into consumers hands faster than expected. Already, fuel cell batteries for cell phones and laptop computers are coming available, which might be a good first step in initiating the technology to consumers.

    By the way, I worked with fuel cells nearly 15 years ago on a self-sustained propulsion project for the U.S. Navy and currently, I'm working on distribution contracts with manufacturers of fuel cell generators to the residential housing market.