Fuel cells can help to provide a nearly unending source of electrical power when the chemicals in the cell are maintained.
What a Fuel Cell Can Do
Fuel cells are becoming a widely accepted way of using renewable energy in cars, machines, and other electronics. By being able to convert fuels in to electricity, the cell can bring power to a contraption. Via a series of chemical reactions in the cell itself, the electricity is produced and it will continue to be produced so long as the electrolytes and other chemicals in the cell are maintained. The chemical reaction between the chemicals in the fuel cell and the renewable energy fuel makes the electrical charge which can then be stored and discharged when necessary.
Types of Fuel Cells
Just as there are a number of different kinds of combined renewable energy technologies, there are a number of different kinds of fuel cells, depending on the chemicals used inside.
Here are some of the fuel cells available, though there are many more which can be used:
- Metal hydride fuel cell
- Electro-galvanic fuel cell
- Zinc-air battery
The benefits of fuel cells are many. Since these cells can be used in conjunction with other renewable energy sources, the entire electrical source can be clean. For example, the solar power is taken in by the cell and then the reaction in the fuel cell creates electricity which can then be used to power a car.
Downsides of Fuel Cells
As with many renewable energy sources right now, the largest obstacle in the implementation of these fuel cells is that these cells are quite expensive to create and to build. Plus, they are not widely manufactured for the private market, used mainly in the commercial and the research markets at the present time. Also, the fuel cell loses its efficiency the more energy is drawn from it, becoming less and less efficient over time.