If a company told you that a car could produce water, would you drink it? That’s the situation posed between the Mercedes-Benz F-Cell vehicle, and actors Joshua Jackson and Diane Kruger in a recent video by the probably-not-sadistic automaker.
Being actors, the two have personal resources for dramatizing the unusual science project. To make the scenario more interesting, however, Mercedes-Benz wondered: where do people thirst most?
In a somewhat overly literal answer to that question, a film crew went out with Jackson and Kruger to California’s Death Valley, a 3,000 square mile wasteland of sand and rock where little grows. It is apparently the lowest and driest area in North America, and the hottest valley in the world with days usually above 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and a record of 134 degrees in 1913, way before Al Gore was around to get all hot and bothered.
The F-Cell is Mercedes-Benz’s hydrogen fueled concept vehicle. Hydrogen is the most abundant chemical element in the universe, and one of the two building blocks of water. The F-Cell works by compressing hydrogen to create electricity. The electricity powers the vehicle, and the only byproduct is water vapor.
Engineers fitted a special tank to the F-Cell to capture the water vapor so that the more the two drove through Death Valley, the more vapor would accumulate and eventually fill the tank. Normally the vapor is emitted out the tailpipe into the world.
Being high-profile celebrities, it’s impossible that there was any chance of harm coming from the experiment, and we imagine that numerous German interns were made to try the water beforehand in a controlled laboratory environment. Still, it’s nice to see a pair of non-sciencey people getting their water by driving an F-Cell around.
The F-Cell is a prototype for now, but with a 190-mile range and long-term backing from Mercedes-Benz, we hope to see the technology will continue to develop.