Furukawa Battery plans for fuel cells powered by salt water
Fuel cell technology is no doubt the future of clean energy. That is especially the case with automobile industry which is trying pretty hard to change from its addiction of fossil fuel consumption to greener energy sources. Electric vehicles today are mostly plug-ins that use Lithium-Ion batteries to store energy and then power them on down the line. But future technology offers the possibility of using hydrogen fuel cells as a clean and emission-free source of power. But till we get there, there are other options that are being looked at.
Every fuel cell that generates electricity uses an intrinsic chemical reaction to do so. Furukawa Battery is a firm that is trying to change these materials that are conventionally used in a fuel cell to produce newer and more efficient ways of generating power. Their latest venture is a Magnesium-based fuel cell that uses salt water as an electrolyte instead of a chemical alkali as an electrolyte. The innovation promises to do away with expensive and toxic chemicals such as lead from fuel cell units and promises cheaper and cleaner ones.
The technology is apparently pretty close to going commercial and if and when it does do so, it provides for a great way to provide cost effective fuel cells to one and all. Furukawa Battery plan to start their distribution from the healthcare and telecommunications sector and then move outwards. It will be interesting to see when a prototype will be on show and how long it would take to actually go commercial.