Elon Musk may think hydrogen fuel cells are bullshit, but that hasn’t stopped automakers from investing billions of dollars for a “marketing gimmick.” The latest hydrogen fuel cell gimmick involves Hyundai, which took the water collected from an ix35 (Hyundai Tucson) crossover, and used it to grow a garden in London.
Gimmick or not, this is admittedly a pretty cool demonstration of the potential hydrogen fuel cells represent. Revealed at London’s Design Museum, the Fuel Cell Farm takes water vapor from a running Hyundai ix35, condenses it, and filters it through a aquaponics farm. Aquaponics combines traditional hydroponics (growing plants in water) with fish farming. The fish waste feeds the plants, creating a sustainable farm that can be used just about anywhere.
The one-off project is designed to demonstrate automotive fuel cell technology, and I expect to see more such marketing schemes in the coming years, leading up to Hyundai’s promised 2015 launch of a fuel cell car. This is where I remind readers that Hyundai has been promising to cell fuel cell vehicles since 2011, and they always seem to be just a few years away.
Could cars really feed small-scale farms of the future? It certainly would be a twist on the traditional anti-car sentiment many environmentalists feel, though we have to get some hydrogen cars on the road first.