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Long Distance Mileage Test on Saturn SL1


            Having opportunity to travel to the New York State High School Track and Field Championships, I decided to do a long distance mileage test on the Saturn equipped with Hydrogen-Boost. 

The entire trip was 487 miles and covered two distinct types of driving.  From Glens Falls to Johnstown the road was mountainous and hilly back roads and county highways, and then the remainder of the trip to Rochester was fairly flat interstate highway.  The return trip was over the same roads but in the opposite direction. 

Having traveled back and forth to Johnstown at least three times in the last month for track meets, I new what kind of mileage that portion of the trip consistently produced.  Previous trips to Johnstown produced 43.5 miles per gallon and today’s conditions were similar so it was safe to assume that this portion of today’s trip also produced 43.5 miles per gallon. 

The distance from Glens Falls to Johnstown was 53.5 miles so 107 miles of today’s trip was subtracted from the total mileage of 487 to leave 380 miles of highway driving, including the 5-6 miles of local congested traffic in Rochester. 

Upon returning from the trip I refilled the tank to the same overflowing condition, taking on a total of 8.8 gallons of gasoline.  Figuring that the Glens Falls to Johnstown portion of the trip averaged 43.5 mpg, that calculated to 2.46 gallons for that portion of the trip, leaving 6.34 gallons for the highway portion of the trip.  Dividing the highway miles of 380 by the remaining gas of 6.34 gallons produces a highway mileage of  60 mpg. 

If we included the 5-6 local miles in Rochester into the hilly section and subtracted that 5-6 miles from the highway section the mileage was actually a little higher than 60 mpg on the highway section.  This is very close to the short trip tests on the highway reported last month of 61.2 miles per gallon.  Even if we took the whole trip together for an average mileage, we would have 487 miles divided by 8.8 gallons for an average of  55.34 miles per gallon. 

The trip to Rochester was done at 70 miles per hour, but drafting techniques were used to reduce the wind resistance.  The return trip was done without drafting but at a leisurely speed of 55-60 miles per hour.  Both techniques will help your highway mileage. 

Early tests with the Saturn equipped with Hydrogen-Boost but without the water mist system achieved 48 miles per gallon at a highway speed of 70 miles per gallon and without drafting.  Water mist might have improved that to 53 mpg but that has not been tested.  Since the Rochester test drive my water mist ultrasonic vaporizer developed a leak and flooded my cockpit floor.  I must now come up with a replacement water mist system.

I do want to report here that the highway portion of the trip did include some driving techniques that are in the Hydrogen-Boost operator’s manual, however, no porpoising was used.  Porposing would have increased the mileage significantly on the hilly section, probably from the 43.5 mpg to about 50 mpg, but would have done little for the high speed portion of the highway section.  The return portion of the highway section could have achieved 65 mpg if porposing was used.  One of these days I will hook up my gear shift mounted engine shut off switch and do a porpoising test drive on the Saturn.  Typically I have achieved a 20% increase over my best highway mileage when I did a porposing test drive.  I would expect to achieve well over 70 mpg with this test on the Saturn.




Saturn emissions, fog tests, and pop tests


            Yesterday I had an explosion in the hydrogen generator so today I repositioned the spacers inside which had moved and allowed a couple electrodes to touch and cause a spark.  After reassembling the hydrogen generator I noticed that there was a quite a bit of fog coming out of the tail pipe.  The engine was quite warm because I had just driven back from church in SGF.  I tried taking pictures of the tailpipe fog with my digital camera but when returning to my computer for download of the pictures I realized that I had lost the program and transfer wire when rebuilding the computer.  I guess I’ll have to get a new digital camera.

            During the examination of the exhaust with different configurations I noticed that when I disconnected the hydrogen generator there was a noticeable skip/pop in the exhaust about 20-25 times per minute as well as a noticeably noxious smell in the exhaust that would burn the back of my throat when inhaling the exhaust out of my cupped hand held 12 inches from the exhaust pipe.  Reattaching the hydrogen generator improved the exhaust, as well as eliminating the skip/pop.  Adding water mist almost totally cleared up the exhaust so that there was no objection to inhaling it.  There was no noticeable difference in fog/vapor in the exhaust at any time until the engine was warmed up to the point that the electric fan on the radiator came on.  Then the vapor/fog almost completely disappeared.  No measurements were taken or amount of vapor as no instruments were available.  Hopefully I will be able to figure a way to make measurements without expensive equipment.  Following is a table of the results of today’s tests.


Equipment                    fog                   smell                 throat                           skip/pop

None                            yes                   noxious burned                          20-30/minute

Hydrogen                     yes                   slight                 very slight                     none

Hydrogen and mist        yes                   very little           none                             none


Conclusions:  Addition of hydrogen in the intake air cleared up the skip in the idle running of the engine as well as cleaning the exhaust.  Addition of water mist helped even more.  These two elements of the Hydrogen-Boost system improve the exhaust emissions as well as improve mileage.  It is quite probable that they also keep the engine itself cleaner by eliminating the skipping.


Lost Mailing List


            In the last month my computer completely crashed and I had to build a new one.  In this crash I lost my previous email mailing list for the Hydrogen-Boost Newsletter.  The newsletter is going out only to those who have subscribed since last month.  If you know any of the previous subscribers of have any friends that would like to receive this newsletter, please have them contact me and re-subscribe to this newsletter.  Thank you.


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