Fuel Saving

  • Several years ago, a friend and I were talking about a story that we had heard of a guy in the Philippines who was supposedly running a car on water, obviously after a few single malt whiskey’s we decided that this needed further investigation. We started trawling the internet – there are hundreds of references to water powered cars. Wikipedia states ‘A water-fuelled car is a hypothetical automobile that derives its energy directly from water. Water-fuelled cars have been the subject of numerous international patents, newspaper and popular science magazine articles, local television news coverage, and the Internet. The claims for these devices have been found to be incorrect and some were found to be tied to investment frauds. ‘The process of electrolysis would split water into hydrogen and oxygen, but it takes as much energy to take apart a water molecule as was released when the hydrogen was oxidized to form water. In fact, some energy would be lost in converting water to hydrogen and then burning the hydrogen because some waste heat would always be produced in the conversions.

    Being the men that we are, we did not let this dissuade us in our quest, I spent more time on the Net and found that in America several companies offer ‘Hydrogen Cell’ systems for cars. However, the American systems all seem to use a “Cell” that requires +/- 12-15Amps being drawn from the alternator – and appears to boil the liquid in the “Cell” to produce the Hydrogen. Bearing in mind the Wikipedia comment ‘it takes as much energy to take apart a water molecule as was released’ I felt that in respect of the American kits this may well be the case, not to mention
    that if the liquid in the cell was being continuously boiled – I figured that it would need to be topped up continually, and this did not seem to me to be very efficient.

    Then sometime in June/July 2012 a friend (another Jag man) in Zimbabwe sent us a copy of an article that he had read in the Jaguar Drivers Club UK Magazine. It seems that a Jag Man in the UK had designed and built a Hydrogen System – which he was using on his older model Jag, with some success. Our Zimbo Jag man got in touch with the chap in the UK and got the plans/specifications of the Hydrogen System that he had made. Our Zimbo Jag Man is a very enterprising fellow, who proceeded to make the Hydrogen System Unit – although he did have problems getting some of the electronic parts of the unit in Zimbabwe – so we sourced the parts and sent them to him.

    He told us’ that the Hydrogen Cell was working well and that he was seeing a definite improvement in his fuel consumption. So we figured we should have a look at making a unit for ourselves so that we could test it on one of our vehicles. Our Zimbo Jag Man duly sent us the plans/specifications for the Hydrogen Cell- both Vic Richardson and I looked these over and came to the conclusion that there was no way we had the resources to make one of these Hydrogen Units ourselves.

    It was now October 2012 and we still had not had much success in our Quest, then my copy of the JEC Magazine arrives in the post, as usual I have a quick glance at the magazine at the office – and discover an article by another member who had just had a Hydrogen System fitted to his 1997 X300- (what really got me was that his 3.2 Litre X300 is identical to mine!) He relates that he had also been looking into Water Powered Cars for quite some time – and he seems to have gone pretty much the same route as I had. He said that he had seen an article on Hydrogen on Demand Systems from a company based in Devon and decided to make the 300 Mile trip to get a unit fitted to his X300.

    Unfortunately, when he arrived in Devon – they told him that as the Jag seemed to have some problems and it needed a service and tune up before they would install the Hydrogen on Demand System, as he would not feel the full benefits of the system in the state that the engine was in. Although he was somewhat annoyed that he had undertaken a 600 mile round trip – he thought that they had been pretty open and honest with him, so he arranged to get the car serviced and have a tune up done by his service agents.

    Once he had had the service/tune up done, he made arrangements to go back down to Devon to have the Hydrogen Cell fitted to his car. He reported in the article that he had not done enough driving to date to give accurate details of his fuels savings, except that he stated that on the return trip from Devon he used about 30% less fuel than he had used on the trip to Devon. He finished off saying that he would report back after he had used the system for some time.

    The article excited me, and I made contact with the company in Devon and spoke at length with the owner/inventor – it seems that in the 70’s he was building Mini Cooper racing engines (strange as during the 70’s I rebuilt 4-5 Mini’s -I also had a bit of a passion for them) He had realized the limitations of petrol and saw the benefits of more efficient fuels used in racing. He figured that Hydrogen combined with Oxygen could be used an additive. The late 70’s had no easy answers and most prototypes failed to work. In 2004 he started developing a prototype cell, this has evolved into the Hydrogen on Demand Cells/Systems he now makes. Where I come from there is an old saying “I don’t believe it until I see’s It”. So I arranged to send him some pounds sterling – and for him to send me a couple of kits to try out.

    We are now six months down the line and I have bought the distributorship for Africa for the Hydrogen on Demand Systems -I have a system fitted to my own X300 and am averaging a fuel saving of about 30-35% around town, and better on long open road trips. We have fitted a system to our 2001one-ton Hyundai 2.6 litre diesel truck with exceptional results – it has never run as smoothly and although it is used daily by several of our drivers we are still saving fuel. I have just this week fitted a system to my wife’s 2.0litre petrol Honda CRV – and will be able to judge the benefits within the next month. After a search spanning several years and numerous dead ends, I believe that I have found a system that really works, not only reducing fuel consumption and improving performance but also significantly reducing harmful exhaust emissions.

    Meaner, Cleaner and Greener
    Geoff Clarke – Gaborone Botswana

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