There are two or three
main objectives for creating a Hydrogen Generator Unit - increasing the
Miles Per Gallon (MPG) performance and reducing the harmful emissions are
the top two priorities, while running the vehicle on water alone is a future
The first two objectives
are readily achievable, but running a vehicle on water alone is not going to
happen for almost everyone. The internal combustion engine has efficiency
less than 50%. This means that at least half of the energy available from
the fuel which you use is wasted and does not produce useful mechanical
output power. In many cases, that percentage can be as high as 90% wasted;
but let's be generous and assume that your particular engine is especially
good and manages 50% efficiency.
The main way of running
an engine with water as the only fuel, involves splitting water into
hydrogen and oxygen and then burning those gases to power the engine. To be
self-sustaining, the splitting of the water has to be done by the electrics
of the vehicle and that means that the efficiency of the water splitting has
to be more than 200% efficient. That just doesn't happen with simple
systems, so please forget the notion of building some device in your garage
with a couple of hours work and waving goodbye to filling stations forever -
it is not going to happen.
Just to set the record
straight, it is possible to do just that, but the difficulty level is about
the same as building a rocket capable of going into orbit, which is
something well beyond the capabilities of most people. Please understand
that it calls for exceptional skills, very considerable expenditure and a
great deal of patience, so for the time being, please forget about it.
What can be done quite
readily and at a low cost is to construct a device which will raise the
efficiency of your engine. This is done by feeding a hydrogen/oxygen gas mix
(called hydroxy gas, Brown's gas, HHO gas) into your engine along with the
air which is drawn in to make the engine run. A device of this type is
called a "Generator or a Booster" as it boosts the fuel burn, extracting a
greater percentage of the fuel's available energy. An important side effect
of this improvement in the burn quality of the fuel is the fact that
unburned fuel no longer gets pushed out of the exhaust as harmful emissions.
Another effect is that
the engine has greater pulling power and runs smoother. Inside your engine,
carbon deposits will have built up from previous un-boosted running. These
deposits get burnt away when you use a booster and that extends the engine
Some people worry about
the fact that burning hydroxy gas produces water and they imagine this water
causing rusting inside the engine. What they do not realize is that the
ordinary fuel used in the engine is a "hydrocarbon" which is a compound of
hydrogen and carbon and that fuel actually splits up to form hydrogen which
the engine burns. Actually, it is the carbon part of the hydrocarbon fuel
which is the problem, producing Carbon Dioxide (greenhouse gas), Carbon
Monoxide, and physical carbon deposits inside the engine. A normal fuel burn
produces water anyway, but you don't get rusting inside the engine as the
temperature there is so high that any water is in the form of steam or vapor
which dry out completely when the engine is switched off. Adding a small
amount of hydroxy gas has no adverse effects at all.
Just to make sure that
you understand what is involved, a booster is a simple container which holds
a set of plates submerged in water which probably has an additive to make
the water conduct electrical current better. A pipe from the top of the
container feeds the gas into the air filter of the vehicle, via one or two
simple safety devices. Adding this gas causes a major improvement in the
quality of the fuel burn inside the engine and cuts harmful emission to near
As a consequence of
this, it is possible to reduce the amount of fossil fuel being sent to the
engine. This is not something which should be done if hydroxy gas is not
being added as the engine is liable to overheat and some damage could occur.
It is a completely different matter if hydroxy gas is being added. However,
all recent engine designs have an Electronic Control Unit (ECU) which
controls the amount of fuel being sent to the engine. The ECU accepts
input signals from an "Oxygen Sensor" placed in the exhaust stream, and
often a second sensor after the catalytic converter to make sure that the
catalytic converter has not failed.
Unfortunately, the much
improved exhaust caused by the better fuel burn caused by the hydroxy gas,
causes the ECU to think that the engine fuel-air mix must be too low, and so
it pumps in more fuel in an effort to compensate. Ideally, this can be dealt
with by adding a circuit board which adjusts the signal coming from the
oxygen sensor so that it is correct for the improved fuel burn.
So, to recap, the only
practical device which you can build yourself and use to improve automotive
performance is a "Hydrogen Generator/Booster". Using a booster improves the
efficiency of the fuel burn inside your engine and that results in more
power, better torque, smother running and vastly improved exhaust emissions.
If the ECU is not adjusted or its input signal not controlled, the MPG
figures may actually get slightly lower due to unwanted excess fuel being
pumped into the engine. If a control circuit is used to correct this ECU
error, then MPG gains will be produced.
There is the
possibility of your MPG actually decreasing. The most common cause is a
vacuum leak caused by the installation of your device. But too much hydroxy
gas mixed with your gasoline can cause your motor timing to fire too soon -
before Top Dead Center. Hydroxy is very explosive. Its flash rate is many
times faster than gasoline. The more of it you put into your engine, the
more volatile your air fuel ratio will become. If your gasoline burns too
fast, it causes a negative force on the piston before it gets to TDC. That
is like trying to drive with your foot on the brakes; it slows the vehicle
and wears the parts down. To over come negative MPG gains, it may be
necessary to change the timing of the motor. Retard the timing so that it
fires closer to TDC or in some cases after TDC.
There is another alternative for us to consider;Plasma Arc.
The following video
demonstrates using Plasma to run an engine on water.