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Hydrogen as an Energy Carrier - Possibilities and Challenges


Autore: G.Q. Miller, D.W. Penner, M. Whysall

Collana: FM - 2004 Sorrento - Third International Symposium - Energy and Environment

Currently, growth in the demand for molecular hydrogen (H2) is exceeding the growth in
overall energy consumption. This growth is being driven by the needs of the refining industry
to produce low-sulphur fuels and increase conversion capacity. The future holds the potential
for a transition to a hydrogen economy, in which molecular H2 becomes an energy carrier for
energy storage and transfer. In this scenario, H2 would be used for transportation and for
distributed power production. H2 will become an Energy Carrier. The advantages of a
hydrogen economy are increased diversity of supply, potentially higher efficiency and zero
emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG).
There is considerable government support in Europe, Japan and the United States for moving
to a hydrogen economy. However, the challenges associated with a transition are
considerable. Significant technology advances in H2 production for both large-scale and
small-scale H2 production are required, including the need for advances in carbon
management. H2 storage and delivery capabilities need to be improved. Cost, efficiency and
reliability improvements in fuel cell technology are needed. There are great opportunities for
those who develop technology to meet these needs. This paper will address the possibilities
and challenges associated with a possible transition to a hydrogen economy.

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