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EMD and Chevron enter agreement to explore Hydrogen fueled 710.

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EMD and Chevron enter agreement to explore Hydrogen fueled 710.
Posted by YoHo1975 on Wednesday, September 15, 2021 5:14 PM

As mentioned in my other thread:

https://www.marinelog.com/engines-fuel/chevron-and-caterpillar-eye-hydrogen-fueled-marine-applications/

 

https://www.railwayage.com/mechanical/locomotives/caterpillar-chevron-team-on-hydrogen-power/

 

Marine looks like it would be the primary market and there are already Marine Hydrogen powered tugs in the works

https://www.behydro.be/en/home.html

https://www.rivieramm.com/news-content-hub/aip-advances-hydrogen-powered-tug-62311

 

 

The Marine version of the 710 is Tier 4 certified using after treatment. 

I don't know enough about using Hydrogen as a Diesel replacement to have an opinion. I saw that in some of those tugs, there's support for a Diesel/Hydrogen blend as well as a pure hydrogen solution.

For the railroad application, I'm not sure what the implications are. Where is it stored? What added equipment to use it?

Is the 2 stroke 710 a better platform for Hydrogen than a 4 stroke diesel?

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Posted by YoHo1975 on Wednesday, December 15, 2021 12:10 PM
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Posted by caldreamer on Thursday, December 16, 2021 8:07 AM

They are talking about fuel cell technology the same as used on the space shuttle and international space station.  Store hydrgen and oxygen in seperate containers.  Mix and you get get energy and water.  The electricy produced will be used to power the train.  NO diesel spewing fumes all over the place.

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Posted by rrnut282 on Thursday, December 16, 2021 10:22 AM

Sounds like another "not ready for prime-time" technology.  

Energy density is problem #1.  Wait until you see the size of the tenders needed.  Issue #2 is hydrogen permeates just about any material, so keeping it contained is going to come with a lot of compromises.  And if it can't be contained, all that loose hydrogen is another Hindenberg waiting to happen.  

Are these issues insurmoutable, no.  It depends upon how much railroads are willing to compromise operations to get greener.  Remember the long lives of the gen-sets?  

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Posted by caldreamer on Thursday, December 16, 2021 11:45 AM

The hydrogen is in a liquid state in an insulated tank.  No permeating anything and od gas untill it is used so no Hindenburg which had the hydrogen as a gas.

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Posted by Overmod on Thursday, December 16, 2021 12:25 PM

Look up 'hydrogen embrittlement' for the problem.  Casual leakage is not a major issue; the greater concern is the wide explosive limits for hydrogen in confined spaces and that the hydrogen flame itself is largely invisible.

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Posted by Erik_Mag on Thursday, December 16, 2021 11:15 PM

caldreamer

The hydrogen is in a liquid state in an insulated tank.

LH2 is a pretty low density liquid, with the LH2 tanks on the Centaur, Saturn upper stages and the Shuttle being MUCH larger than the LOX tanks. Another problem is that the energy to liquefy H2 is a pretty significant fraction of the usable energy in the LH2. As with liquid Helium, LH2 is cold enough to freeze air, with the extra excitement of melting frozen air is that the nitrogen will boil off before the oxygen - hydrogen and concentrated oxygen make a lovely combination.

One good thing about hydrogen is that it disperses rapidly.

Probably not as bad as installing a power reactor on a locomotive...

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Posted by Paul Schmidt on Saturday, December 18, 2021 9:25 AM

Seems to me that given hydrogen's explosive nature, this creates an entirely new security issue. In High Threat Urban Areas, how tempting a target would one of the locomotive-tender setups be? BNSF has already experienced issues in the PNW with enviro-terrorists trying to derail Bakken oil trains bound for refineries. 

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, December 20, 2021 10:14 AM

I suspect the principal hazard with cryogenic hydrogen would be fire, but not explosion for the same reason LNG is substantially safe.

It would be comparatively easy to use a hunting rifle to put holes in the tank, but the pressure is comparatively low. You'd probably get reasonably prompt flashback to the tank but little chance of internal ignition between explosive limits.  First response would by that time have the knowledge and tools to approach the tank safely, patch it, and transfer contents reasonably safely (or flare it).

If you were to hit the tank with an RPG, as terrorists would use for a TOT refinery strike, all bets would be off, but I'd expect the cryogenic state to slow the resulting to a pool fire -- severe, but not catastrophic like a BLEVE.

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Posted by SD70Dude on Monday, December 20, 2021 2:44 PM

Shooting a 4500 gallon diesel fuel tank could also have some really spectacular results, especially if one used an RPG.......

Greetings from Alberta

-an Articulate Malcontent

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, December 20, 2021 3:07 PM

SD70Dude
Shooting a 4500 gallon diesel fuel tank could also have some really spectacular results, especially if one used an RPG...

I'd actually suspect that a typical hunting round through a fuel tank might not produce actual fire at all; any vapor flash would go out over the large thermal mass of the fuel and restricted oxygen through the hole after the hydraulic shock had dissipated.    If shot low down you might get flaming dribble, less than a poorly-operating von Boden-Ingles burner...

The RPG was built to 'set tanks aflame' so yes, you'd get a nifty burst followed by a growing pool of fire and black clouds.

 I suspect a nominally-invisible hydrogen fire would show all kinds of colored flame and smoke as it burned paint, ground, etc.  What might be less fun would be if the fire ruptured some part of the air system at main-reservoir pressure, or if no one could safely tie the train down 'under fire' (no pun intended).

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Posted by YoHo1975 on Monday, December 20, 2021 4:44 PM

So what's the assesment of this? Lots of comments that seem dismissive. Are Progress/EMD and Cheveron barking up the wrong tree here? 

What about the Hydrogen tug boats. Both hybrid and full Hydrogen?

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, December 20, 2021 4:59 PM

I am waiting to see what they can make of a hydrogen two-stroke conversion.  The only particular difference between a fuel-cell use of hydrogen and a combustion-engine version is in the final use of the hydrogen from storage, presumably with Rankine-style exhaust heat being used to add temperature to the cryo hydrogen or displace it from hydride.

There are examples of hydrogen used in combustion motors, but the ones I have seen are four-stroke.  Presumably the point is to utilize the parts and infrastructure of EMD engines, which would at least partly explain why the 710 and not the J-block 4-stroke is used as the development for proof of concept.

My opinion is that it will be as practical as bituminous pulverized-coal firing on locomotives, and the development will be marked by similar incidents... 

I firmly believe the future for hydrogen is in fuel-cells charging substantial traction batteries in a hybrid configuration, with as many parts as possible in common with diesel-electrics in hybrid consist with (cabbed) BEV road slugs like the FLXdrive.  Hydrogen power simply to a traction generator makes even less sense than fuel cells without energy storage.

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Monday, December 20, 2021 5:14 PM

This poster's question is.   How many BTUs does it take to make a BTU of Hydrogen?  Then what is the energy recovery of the diesel unit (710 in this case).  How does that compare of diesel using normal diesel fuel (710)?  Recognize that the production of Hydrogen sometimes can be made from surplus electrical energy.  Will there be any surplus with many electric vehicles recharging?  

Are the RRs just experminating with these new type locos?  That way if they fail for whatever reason the RRs can say we tried.  I remember all the failed experminents.  One great experiment that has succeeded is AC traction.  The DPU has also succeded fairly well.  

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, December 20, 2021 5:24 PM

Carrier hydrogen is ridiculously profligate both in terms of energy and cost; the short-term 'advantage' is in mandated zero-carbon without sequestration; the longer term is unlikely to be built out without substantial Government subsidy and I suspect practically operated without subsidy.  Conventional cost-effectiveness does not apply.

One argument has been that diesel fuel is itself heavily 'subsidized' in cost by the vast refining and distribution infrastructure for fossil oil, and that as aggregate demand for diesel and gasoline drops worldwide (with nations jumping on the BEV bandwagon wholesale with blind prayer to the Electricity Fairy to keep the electrons chugging) the whole diesrl-engine economy will go the way of big steam power as all the auxiliary manufacturers folded or retasked themselves.

Remains to be seen.

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Posted by YoHo1975 on Monday, December 20, 2021 6:30 PM

My understanding is that Renewables, especially solar, but also Wind to a lesser extent are dropping in installed price like a rock off the empire state building, there's a point where it makes sense to develop technologies that all you to leverage the transitory nature of the generation. Using Solar to create hydrogen may not be the most efficient use of it, but it does create stored energy that is easily used when the sun isn't shining or where the solar plant isn't. By developing this with traditional "dirty" hydrogen generation, you avoid a catch 22 scenario.

 

Again, the cost to deploy solar is dropping like a rock

https://elements.visualcapitalist.com/the-exponential-view-of-solar-energy/

 

In 2021, unsubsidized solar makes Coal and Diesel look like a terrible energy source from a cost perspective. 

Leveraging that is a major goal.

 

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Posted by York1 on Monday, December 20, 2021 6:57 PM

YoHo1975
Again, the cost to deploy solar is dropping like a rock

I wonder if the fact that many of the world's solar panels are being produced by slaves in China has any effect on the price?

https://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelshellenberger/2021/05/14/biden-white-house-may-sanction-chinese-solar-slavery-panels-threatening-renewables-growth/?sh=23cde44a1319

York1 John       

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Posted by YoHo1975 on Monday, December 20, 2021 8:09 PM

This is utility grade solar pricing. Not rooftop so I'd say broadly no.  I'm sure on the margins it matter, but that's not the primary reason.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, December 21, 2021 5:10 AM

York,i think diving kids the resposibility for feeding the cat (and cleaning the litter box) helps them grow in maturaty.

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Posted by blue streak 1 on Tuesday, December 21, 2021 9:07 AM

Lithium?  The US is trying to get some Li mined here but various groups are trying to delay.  as a gottcha it is some of the same groups trying to push battery cars.  Was reading that there is a new way to build batteries that will have much greater energy density however manufacturing problems have not been solved.

Right now Li batteries cost about $163.00 per kilowatt hour.

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Posted by YoHo1975 on Tuesday, December 21, 2021 12:33 PM

Not sure why we're discussing Lithium batteries all of a sudden in a thread that is explicitly NOT about batteries. 

 

If we were to talk about Batteries. From a Utility grade perspective, Iron flow is where all the pundit chatter and VC money is going right now. All local ingrediants. Much of which will be shipped by rail. :)

I don't know if they've solved all the problems. I know there have been recent breakthroughs and test facilities are in progress. But again, none of that has anything to do with a hydrogen fueled locomotive.

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Posted by York1 on Tuesday, December 21, 2021 12:45 PM

YoHo1975
Not sure why we're discussing Lithium batteries all of a sudden in a thread that is explicitly NOT about batteries.

 

Maybe because the article you cited specifically compares the drop in solar power prices to the drop in lithium battery prices.  And the other articles on that same cited page discuss lithium batteries.

https://elements.visualcapitalist.com/the-exponential-view-of-solar-energy/

York1 John       

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, December 21, 2021 7:52 PM

We're discussing batteries because someone introduced solar power to make hydrogen as an alternative to solar power making electricity that is stored for use as such.  This thread is NOT about batteries; there are other threads where battery-related comments will make much better sense.

Personally I think green hydrogen is something of a joke compared to solar electric power.  There are some interesting approaches to dissociating water cost-effectively, but they don't compare with the economics of blue hydrogen with sequestration... and the hydrogen distribution architecture necessary for any 'transportation' use in the first place is agnostic about where the H2 comes from, but likely geared towards bulk delivery from relatively few sources, as modern consumer gasoline is.

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Posted by Erik_Mag on Wednesday, December 22, 2021 9:30 PM

To add a bit to OM's comment, the energy efficiency of a lithium battery is on the order of 90%, whereas efficiency using electrolytic hydrogen plus fuel cells might not be better than 60%. It would be even worse with a combustion engine.

 

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Posted by BEAUSABRE on Monday, December 27, 2021 6:57 AM

Just to throw fuel on the fire, new reports are that a guy in Finland blew up his Tesla when he was told battery replacement was around $22K

Tesla owner blows up his car over $22k battery replacement: Report - Daijiworld.com

(1) Blew Up His Tesla - Bing News

Hey, Elon, wanna talk to you about this news....

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Posted by BEAUSABRE on Monday, December 27, 2021 6:57 AM

Just to throw fuel on the fire, news reports are that a guy in Finland blew up his Tesla when he was told battery replacement was around $22K

Tesla owner blows up his car over $22k battery replacement: Report - Daijiworld.com

(1) Blew Up His Tesla - Bing News

Guess he needs the Energizer Bunny

 

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, December 27, 2021 8:31 AM

This is just another showoff pointing out a failing business practice, like the taxi guys in Holland a couple of years ago. Once there is an 'aftermarket' for BEVs out of warranty, you'll see the price go to the price range mentioned for private garages -- still high, but not ridiculous.

While we're on the battery diversion, remember that RPS sees opportunity in all those good cells that could be recycled from now-unsuitable-for-cars batteries or packs.

And never lose sight of safety, particularly heat and fire control, in redesign or recycling of cells...

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Posted by YoHo1975 on Monday, December 27, 2021 3:35 PM

I didn't read this link, because I just read it, or another link in the battery thread and the first thing that struck me was the owner's comment that the car was nice for the 1st 932 miles and then started throwing error codes...But then later it implies that it's an 8+ year car, because it was out of warranty. Those 2 statements don't mesh really well for me, so as OM said, it sounds like someone with more money than sense just wanted to blow up the car.

I mean, if nothing else, there's going to be a market for used Teslas where a car like that is taken in on low trade in value, batteries replaced and resold.

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Posted by azrail on Friday, January 14, 2022 12:37 PM

Whatever happened to bio-diesel?

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, January 14, 2022 1:12 PM

azrail
Whatever happened to bio-diesel

It contains carbon.  In a zero-carbon economy, the carbon dioxide in the exhaust would have to be sequestered, which is difficult and expensive to accomplish on locomotives.

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