Industrial

Converting crops into cars

Pioneering auto maker Henry Ford was a man before his time. In the 1940s, his vision to "grow automobiles from the soil" resulted in an experimental car made of resin-stiffened hemp fibre, more resistant to denting than steel. More than half a century later, an industry partnership between the Ford Motor Company and the University of Toronto's Dr. Mohini Sain and his collaborators are resurrecting Ford's dream. The chemical engineer is developing technology that will replace the sheet metal and glass fibre used to build cars with natural fibre composite materials, such as hemp.

Fuel cells - powering your home, your car tomorrow?

by P.J. Lakhapate Fuel cell vehicles will probably overtake gasoline-powered cars in the next 20 to 30 years, meaning that fuel cell technology has the possibility of becoming main street technology and not niche technology. If current predictions hold true, fuel cells are likely to penetrate everywhere where energy is used from laptops to vehicles, from home to business. But what exactly is a fuel cell, how does it work and why are billions being poured into this research?

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