On April 27, the world’s first dual renewable fueled tractor was unveiled in Blairstown, Iowa
My five decades at the Jet Propulsion Lab, where we were challenged daily to do the un-doable, served me well in this endeavor, I wanted to collect solar energy to make hydrogen and fuel a working farm tractor, something that has not been done before.
Raphael Schmuecker was born on a farm in Blairstown, Iowa. In his later years he became a vocal advocate of using hydrogen to replace fossil fuels.
Raphael’s son Jay and his children have installed a memorial on the farm where he was raised: the Raphael Schmuecker Memorial Solar-Hydrogen System.
When Raphael was born, horses and oxen were fed from the land and provided power to work the land. Livestock manure fertilized the land. Today, farmers power their equipment with fossil fuels and treat their land with fertilizers, herbicides and insecticides made from fossil energy. Our fossil energy sources are being depleted and will become more expensive in the future.
The Solar-Hydrogen System’s solar power is used to generate hydrogen for use as a tractor fuel and to make ammonia for use as a tractor fuel or fertilizer.
The System’s C-Free Renew (carbon emission free renewable) technology does not result in any carbon emissions in either the generation or consumption of hydrogen or ammonia.
Jay Schmuecker, an Iowa native, is no stranger to R & D efforts. He had a 50-year career at Caltech’s NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), where planetary spacecraft are built. Jay explains,
My five decades at the JPL, where we were challenged daily to do the undoable, served me well in this endeavor. I wanted to collect solar energy to make hydrogen and ammonia to fuel a working farm tractor and ammonia to fertilize the corn cropland. That has not been done before.