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Hydrogen -- the Fuel of the Future (Tom Harkin, U.S. Senator (D))


What should government be doing to prepare for the future of energy? Listen in on Senator Harkin's position.

Transcript: Hydrogen -- the Fuel of the Future

The real fuel for our future, and I don't mean 100 year from now, I mean now, is hydrogen. Well as you know, hydrogen is a colorless, odorless gas. It is the most prevalent element in the entire universe. Hydrogen -- H2. If you know chemistry, you know H2O is water, so hydrogen makes up most of the water that we have in the world, all the oceans, all the water we have in the world. Well hydrogen also has a lot of energy. Hydrogen can be used to produce the energy that we need in a very clean non-polluting manner by using what we call a fuel cell. Here's basically a fuel cell, what you could do, for example, is take electric energy from, say, a photovoltaic cell or a windmill or anything else, and take that electricity, and you could break down water into two parts of hydrogen and one part of oxygen. You take the hydrogen and you put it through this little device called a fuel cell. And as it goes through this membrane, the electron on the hydrogen has to go around the circuit and connect back up and that's how you get your electricity. It produces electricity. There's no moving parts and when the hydrogen goes through this fuel cell it connects back up with the oxygen to form water again. You have a completely closed cycle, totally non-polluting, will not produce any greenhouse gases whatsoever.


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Explore More: Future of Energy
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