June 2012: B.U.G. (Beautiful.Useful.Green) Design

H-Racer 2.0
Remote Controlled Green Energy MicroCar

Horizon Fuel Cell Technologies thinks big by starting small. The international producers of alternative hydrogen fuel cells are bringing clean energy to kids with the H-Racer 2.0 – a remote-controlled car that uses water and solar power to create hydrogen fuel cell technology.

Why is it beautiful? “The H-racer [is] a 6-in.-long toy car that does what Detroit still can’t,” TIME magazine wrote in its review of the H-racer, which they named as one of the best inventions of 2006. Horizon now offers the H-racer 2.0, the next generation model race car that runs faster and goes longer than the original.

Why is it useful?  “It may be years before you can buy a Chevy powered by hydrogen fuel cells,” writes TIME. In the meantime, at home or in the classroom, these remote controlled cars – the world’s smallest hydrogen fuel cell cars – are a powerful teaching tool for budding scientists (and mom and dad too). The H-Racer 2.0 transforms an abstract – hydrogen fuel cell technology – into something physical and fun.

Why is it green? The H-Racer 2.0 kit comes with a  solar cell, hydrogen recharging station, remote control, and the car components.  How does it work? An electric current, produced by solar cells, removes hydrogen from the water (in the recharging station) and runs the car’s electric motor.  When the H-Racer is attached to the refueling station, a balloon inside the vehicle fills up. Once a switch is turned on, the car takes off.

With no need for oil, and no carbon dioxide emissions, the H-Racer 2.0 offers a speedy lesson, in miniature, in alternative energy technologies harvested from renewable resources.  Ladies and gentleman, start your engines!

Want more inspiration? This month in Wired Magazine discover How to be a Geek Dad. After you’ve solved the mystery of hydrogen technology with a racecar, get tips on building a hovercraft, constructing a catapult, or making a Buckminster Fuller blanket fort.
Check out Sally’s blog for more B.U.G. Designs.

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