Water Fuel Cells Move Closer To Reality

Illustration for article titled Water Fuel Cells Move Closer To Reality

A group developing Water Fuel Cell technology claims to be close to completing a fully functioning prototype. Of all the conspiracy theories on the Internet, the one surrounding Stanley Meyer's inventions and death is one of the most well known. Having purportedly developed a Water Fuel Cell - a perpetual motion device capable of extracting power from water by separating the hydrogen and oxygen, then combusting the two, thus reforming water - his work was largely ignored right up to his supposed murder in 1997. Last month, the two patents for this technology moved into the public domain and the Water Fuel Cell Open Source Project was set up to investigate and develop them. A video of Meyer's Water Fuel Cell car follows the jump.


Photo credit: Victor Geere

According the the vast majority of scientists and the laws of physics, perpetual motion and the WFC are not possible. Should those involved be able to avoid assassination attempts and the Project prove successful, those laws would be rewritten and the world's energy landscape be forever changed.

[The Water Fuel Cell Open Source Project]
Stanley Meyers and the Water Fuel Cell [Wikipedia]



Anything that "runs on water" actually runs on electricity. The voltage supplied splits H2O into H2 and O, which are burned.

There's nothing to say that you can't use a clean source to get that electric power, but you're not getting anything for free. Also, any transfer of power has a cost associated with it.

Basically, if you're running solar—>hydrolysis—>combustion, you'd be better off running solar—>electric motor

Generally, "perpetual motion" machines just use a source of energy you're not used thinking about, or laws of physics that don't exist. You learn early on in any engineering education if your answer results in your system producing more energy than it consumes, you've done something wrong.