For the third straight year, the Greater Los Angeles Auto Show has issued its Design Challenge to auto studios to develop plans for environmentally aware vehicles. This year, the Volkswagen Nanospyder hydrogen fuel cell car has met that challenged and then some, jumping ahead the competition.
What makes the VW Nanospyder unique is that the body is made up of billions of tiny nano-scale cell-like devices under .5mm in diameter. These interconnected devices are programmable to sense an impending collision and will either strengthen or weaken their connections to one another to provide optimal chance for survival of the passengers. This latticework of devices would provide crumple zones and be surrounded by a mix of organic materials, some of which would be inflatable to provide further safety to those inside.
These nano-devices also provide a small amount of electricity and along with the hydrogen fuel cell, power the vehicle. Electric motors are mounted within the hubs of all four wheels.
One other design concept of interest for hydrogen car enthusiasts at the L. A. Auto Show is the Acura FCX 2020 Le Mans. This vehicle also uses nanotechnology in the production of its hydrogen fuel cell.