Re: End of airliner evolution?

Date:         21 Nov 96 03:02:20 
From:         mdw@ccu1.auckland.ac.nz (Woodhams)
Organization: University of Auckland
References:   1 2 3 4 5
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trussell@magmacom.com (Tim Russell) writes:
>H2 powered jets are not new it was tested in the 50'a.
>I read a quote that H2 was a "terrific fuel for turbines"
>I expect that hydrogen will replace fossel fuels in the future

>Let's see, you get it from water, when it burns the byproduct is water
>do you see a benifit.

But you need electricity to create the hydrogen. If this electricity
comes from burning fossil fuels, *more* fossil fuel will be used than
currently (because the hydrogen creation process is not 100%
efficient, extra energy will be needed for cryogenics, and the low
density of liquid hydrogen implies larger planes for the same payload
which implies more drag.) On the other hand, the pollution will be at
ground level, where it may be less damaging, and can be processed by
flue gas scrubbers etc. which can't be put on an airplane. The choice
of fossil fuels to use is greater. Some alternative energy sources
(e.g. windmills on ocean buoys) have troubles linking to the
electricity grid, so for these it may make sense to store the energy
by electrolizing hydrogen out of water, and have ships come to empty
the hydrogen tanks every so often.

I've read in Aviation Leak about the possibility of airplanes that are
basically a giant wing that flies at an angle. As I recall, these
planes had a lot of volume per payload, and so would seem to go well
with hydrogen power. Can somebody technical comment on this?