Hydrogen Fuel has a lot of great positives. It has been used to he moon and to power spacecraft. But it does have an annoying problem. Hydrogen is the smallest atom and the H2 molecule is the smallest molecule. So it is hard to keep hold of. It leaks.
A recent breakthrough at the CSIRO is looking to use Ammonia NH3, a molecule consisting of one Nitrogen atom and 3 Hydrogen atoms, to help us store and transport Hydrogen. The key here is that you need to be able to get the Hydrogen back without doing anything toxic nor consuming very much power. Otherwise it stops being a good net power source.
So how does this work?
The membrane is a fine metal mesh that lets the Hydrogen pass but blocks the Nitrogen. The result is 1 x N2 molecules and 3 x H2 molecules. So no pollution. And we have already developed methods to trade and transport Ammonia on a global scale so this looks to be a winner all round.
Why does Hydrogen Fuel matter?
There are some challenges still. Atmospheric pollution can deteriorate the cells and they aren’t yet inexpensive to make. But the ability to readily transport Hydrogen brings us a step closer to a fully renewable power source that is not dependent on weather or season.
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Successful Endeavours specialise in Electronics Design and Embedded Software Development, focusing on products that are intended to be Made In Australia. Ray Keefe has developed market leading electronics products in Australia for more than 30 years.
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