Minot, North Dakota, a town that was once known as “Little Chicago” back in the days of Al Capone was once a major hub for Capone’s liquor smuggling operation complete with underground tunnels to conceal the cargo. Minot has come a long way since then and today a major stir is occurring in the sense that renewable energy and hydrogen cars are coming to town.
At Ryan Chevrolet, three dual-fuel (gasoline-ethanol) Chevy Silverado pickup trucks were unveiled that had been converted to run on hydrogen. A Phoenix company, AFVTech completed the conversions and testing of all three vehicles. The hydrogen pickup trucks were being delivered as part of renewable energy research project for the North Central Research Center.
At the North Central Research Station, a wind turbine is being constructed that will convert wind energy to electricity, electrolyze water and generate hydrogen, which will then be used to fuel the converted Silverado pickup trucks. Representatives from Verendrye Electric, North Central Research Center and Central Power Electric were on hand for a ceremony at Ryan Chevrolet.
The wind turbine won’t be completed until the autumn, but perhaps just knowing that hydrogen cars have started coming to their state will let the Minot men and women of North Dakota breathe a little easier. Remember, hydrogen is not just a lot of hot air.