Sunday, May 20, 2007

Maybe Doc Brown Wasn't All That Nuts

Remember the scene towards the end of the Back to the Future movie? Doc Brown returns from the future in his flying DeLorean. He then proceeds to refuel the car by throwing all kinds of garbage into it, including banana peels and aluminum soda cans. Twenty years ago, when the movie came out, the whole idea seemed kind of ridiculous.

Since then, biofuels have become reality. Whether it's ethanol from corn, or biodiesel from assorted other food waste, the process is very real and there are vehicles out there running on the stuff.

Now comes word that engineers at Purdue University have developed a process by which aluminum pellets are mixed with water, resulting in hydrogen which can then be used to fuel cars. And what makes this process all the more amazing is that the whole thing takes place in the fuel tank of the car, thereby eliminating the need for hydrogen refueling stations.

What's next? An actual flux capacitor?

0 thoughtful ramblings: