Is Hydrogen the next Maritime Fuel?

3 mins read  Sealuminati TeamSeptember 23, 2021

The world could begin to produce more raw hydrogen production sooner than expected after Australian researchers discovered what they described as a "sporting paralysis" in hydrogen production. Curtin University has identified a new, cheaper, and more efficient electrocatalyst that can help produce hydrogen in water. If confirmed, these emergencies could open up new avenues for more outstanding production of clean energy.

Crude hydrogen is considered a future fuel in the maritime industry, which is under increasing pressure to split over the next few decades. This sector is responsible for about one-fourth of all emissions globally, producing about one million tons of CO2 annually. According to Currin's researchers, scientists have generally been using precious metals such as platinum to speed up the reaction of water into hydrogen and oxygen.

However, they found that adding nickel and cheap cobalt, the last of which inefficiently improved their performance, reducing the required water separation capacity and increasing hydrogen yields.

"Our study found that we took iron-sulphur nanocrystals, which rarely act as stimulants in hydrogen-powered reactions in water, and added small amounts of nickel and cobalt ions. In doing so, we have completely transformed the inefficient iron-sulphur into an effective and efficient catalyst," said Dr. Guohua Jia, lead researcher at Curtis's School of Molecular and Life Sciences.

He also added that the discovery could have far-reaching effects on sustainable green fuel production in the future. Using more would material is cheaper and more efficient than the current benchmark, ruthenium oxide, found in the ruthenium material.

Dr. Jia mentioned that the next steps would be to evaluate and expand the group's work on a large scale to assess its commercial performance.

Raw hydrogen is one of the three production methods available for this fuel. Ordinary gray hydrogen is produced from steam conversion by natural gas or syngas and is highly carbon dioxide. The exact process produces blue hydrogen, but carbon capture, use, and storage technology to remove most CO2 from the exhaust stream.

Despite the challenges of making crude hydrogen on the scale, many researchers believe that natural hydrogen is the most promising method in the global shipping industry, given the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent by 2050.

Image Credit: Seatrade