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International zero-emmission motorsports Answered

The world's first international hydrogen-powered motorsport race was held in Rotterdam this weekend.

Dubbed the Formula Zero championship, the contest pitted teams from five countries against each other in a zero-emissions go-kart race.

Each team's entry was powered by a commercial fuel cell that produces electricity from hydrogen.

It may be small-scale, with only six teams entering go-kart sized vehicles, but Formula Zero is an officially-recognised motorsport, with plans for scaling up to Formula Three and the Formula One style and speeds.

"In 10 years if the motorsport industry as a whole hasn't engaged in zero or low emission principles, it probably won't be around," said Greg Offer, who headed up the Imperial College London team. "Teams that embrace this new technology early on will succeed, and those that don't will fall by the wayside."

Racing excitement won't suffer, though; Dr. Offer says that fuel-cell powered vehicles don't represent a compromise in performance over traditional petrol-fuelled engines.

'"With a combustion engine, you have to reach three or four thousand revs to get your peak power," he says. "With an electric vehicle, it's all there from standing, and they're more efficient."

The next races are planned for the US in March 2009. Plenty of time to get your own entry built.

Imperial Team
Formula Zero homepage
BBC news article


This may actually be a great alternative to formula student for the less well funded teams, I'd love to be on the build team of an entry and at this start out level it could be possible to break in to for new teams at amateur levels... On the other hand there's nothing I love more than screaming oil burners... However if I can just get the chance I'll have a nice compromise to the lack of sound, with the addition of a very odd item...

...a microphone and speaker so we can all here you going neeeee-owwww! as you drive past.

Actually to give a confusing clue about the project I mentioned to you it is an amplifier of sorts.

Soon mr kite soon, it's amazing you haven't put this one together yet.

NOOOOOO! This is so wrong. Its only zero emissions if they generate the hydrogen with wind or coal. Even if they do they create tons of emissions manufacturing parts for it.

On the FZ website, they refer to it as zero emissions at wheel (and since when was coal zero emission?).

Oops, I meant with wind or solar, NOT coal. Still, its better than straight gasoline (petrol)