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New Water Splitting Technique Efficiently Produces Hydrogen Fuel

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posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 03:48 PM
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This is definitely going change things.This could potentially make some bottled water companies as rich as eXXon over night.I guess we can see why Nestle wanted to privatize and monetize water now.






Aug. 1, 2013 — A University of Colorado Boulder team has developed a radically new technique that uses the power of sunlight to efficiently split water into its components of hydrogen and oxygen, paving the way for the broad use of hydrogen as a clean, green fuel. The CU-Boulder team has devised a solar-thermal system in which sunlight could be concentrated by a vast array of mirrors onto a single point atop a central tower up to several hundred feet tall. The tower would gather heat generated by the mirror system to roughly 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit (1,350 Celsius), then deliver it into a reactor containing chemical compounds known as metal oxides, said CU-Boulder Professor Alan Weimer, research group leader. As a metal oxide compound heats up, it releases oxygen atoms, changing its material composition and causing the newly formed compound to seek out new oxygen atoms, said Weimer. The team showed that the addition of steam to the system -- which could be produced by boiling water in the reactor with the concentrated sunlight beamed to the tower -- would cause oxygen from the water molecules to adhere to the surface of the metal oxide, freeing up hydrogen molecules for collection as hydrogen gas. "We have designed something here that is very different from other methods and frankly something that nobody thought was possible before," said Weimer of the chemical and biological engineering department. "Splitting water with sunlight is the Holy Grail of a sustainable hydrogen economy." A paper on the subject was published in the Aug. 2 issue of Science. The team included co-lead authors Weimer and Associate Professor Charles Musgrave, first author and doctoral student Christopher Muhich, postdoctoral researcher Janna Martinek, undergraduate Kayla Weston, former CU graduate student Paul Lichty, former CU postdoctoral researcher Xinhua Liang and former CU researcher Brian Evanko. One of the key differences between the CU method and other methods developed to split water is the ability to conduct two chemical reactions at the same temperature, said Musgrave, also of the chemical and biological engineering department. While there are no working models, conventional theory holds that producing hydrogen through the metal oxide process requires heating the reactor to a high temperature to remove oxygen, then cooling it to a low temperature before injecting steam to re-oxidize the compound in order to release hydrogen gas for collection.


As you can imagine this is garnering HUGE amounts of attention and is causing crashes on the website so don't be surprised if you can't connect.

Mr Linky
edit on 1-8-2013 by canDarian because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 03:55 PM
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i might as well be the first to say that no matter how many new and wonderful energy technologies come along not a single one of them will ever trickle down to the average consumer without first the power elite devising control and money making strategies for its use.

that being said, its always amazing to see what these smarty pants kids in college come up with....



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 03:56 PM
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How efficient is it then? I noticed that the source article doesn't mention 'efficient' at all. How much can be produced per acre , speed of production, what's the initial outlay , the running costs, material wear and tear, and the costs for collecting?



edit on 1-8-2013 by PhoenixOD because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 04:05 PM
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Originally posted by PhoenixOD
How efficient is it then? I noticed that the source article doesn't mention 'efficient' at all. How much can be produced per acre , speed of peroduction, what's the initial outlay , the running costs, material wear and tear, and the costs for collecting?



edit on 1-8-2013 by PhoenixOD because: (no reason given)


Well considering it's solar powered by day and the fuel is cooled by the night I would dare say not too much money at all.




We show that these temperature swings are unnecessary and that isothermal water splitting (ITWS) at 1350°C using the “hercynite cycle” exhibits H2 production capacity >3 and >12 times that of hercynite and ceria, respectively, per mass of active material when reduced at 1350°C and reoxidized at 1000°C.


www.sciencemag.org...
edit on 1-8-2013 by canDarian because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 04:11 PM
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So this is solar power which just happens to be stored in the form of the chemical potential energy of Hydrogen?

I guess it is still better than cracking water through electrolysis. But the value chain efficiency of this is exactly the same as any similar solar power generation capability - except that it produces a hydrogen 'battery' as its outcome.




edit on 1-8-2013 by TheEthicalSkeptic because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 04:34 PM
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Originally posted by canDarian
This is definitely going change things.


I don't know how awesome this really is - I wonder how much water can be removed from our somewhat delicate ecosystem before it's thrown off balance.

I mean, if the destruction of water molecules became the next oil refinement and if it became the fuel of choice for 7 bn - soon to be 12 bn - people, then, well, then I'm not to comfortable with that.

Sure there is loads of water but unlike oil it's all part of the hopefully never ending cycles of the ecosystem.

Thoughts?



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 04:41 PM
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I agree whole heartedly but for the foreseeable future this would be my choice,whats good water if it's contaminated with radioactive isotopes from failed reactors.

We need space ice,Europa will do.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 04:52 PM
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reply to post by TheEthicalSkeptic
 


So this is solar power which just happens to be stored in the form of the chemical potential energy of Hydrogen?

That's the idea. Just a sort of like an (inefficient) battery.

Hydrogen storage can be problematic though.
www.fsec.ucf.edu...



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 04:58 PM
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I wonder how much water can be removed from our somewhat delicate ecosystem before it's thrown off balance.


I think in this case, any water can be used. Say ocean water. The resulting outputs of the process would be Hydrogen, Oxygen, and molten salts (Sodium Chloride and Potassium Chloride at 1350 degrees), Once the produced hydrogen is then used for power, it reacts with oxygen to release its chemical potential energy - which results in water vapor most likely released into the atmosphere, which then precipitates back into the water table.

So we have converted sea water into fresh water in the process and obtained pure ionic salts which must be disposed of, as the two permanent external cycle impacts.

Not bad in regards to environmental sustainability, the question is - does it produce economic sustainability, since it is really nothing more than solar power.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 05:02 PM
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Originally posted by Phage
Hydrogen storage can be problematic though.

But what if we stored the hydrogen inside massive airships, where the hydrogen provides both the lift component AND is as well, the cargo? Wait....we did that... BOOM!! "Oh the humanity!"




edit on 1-8-2013 by TheEthicalSkeptic because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 05:05 PM
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reply to post by TheEthicalSkeptic
 

Yeah, well.
It wasn't actually hydrogen that was the problem (though it didn't help) but we won't go there right now.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 05:07 PM
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Originally posted by canDarian


The tower would gather heat generated by the mirror system to roughly 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit (1,350 Celsius)



Was there a decimal or comma missed there?

Why the frack would you need so many resources just to build up 1,350°C?
A single Fresnel lens not 1m from the target can do the very same job???

Or is this about getting a # load of funding for doing a project half-arsed?



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 01:52 PM
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Nothing new. Keel split the H2O molecule in the late 1800s.



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 08:52 PM
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Originally posted by DupontDeux

Originally posted by canDarian
This is definitely going change things.


I don't know how awesome this really is - I wonder how much water can be removed from our somewhat delicate ecosystem before it's thrown off balance.

I mean, if the destruction of water molecules became the next oil refinement and if it became the fuel of choice for 7 bn - soon to be 12 bn - people, then, well, then I'm not to comfortable with that.

Sure there is loads of water but unlike oil it's all part of the hopefully never ending cycles of the ecosystem.

Thoughts?


This system does not 'use up' water. Water is split into H2 and O2. When you burn the H2 it recombines with O2 into water. AT the beginning you have water and at the end of the process you get your water back.

In the middle you have free energy!

P



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 08:57 PM
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reply to post by pheonix358
 

Except, of course, for the rather large facility to produce it and the system to distribute it.



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 09:04 PM
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Drop a 9 volt battery in a glass of water. There you go.

Or, look up making HHO on the internet. There you go, cheap and fast and ready to go.



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 09:06 PM
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Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by pheonix358
 

Except, of course, for the rather large facility to produce it and the system to distribute it.


Boy, did you miss the whole point!

P



posted on Aug, 3 2013 @ 04:30 AM
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Why do people always fall back on the "super large facility" to produce it argument. Have you ever seen oil refineries?? They are huge, massive facilities of toxic nastiness. And energy is also required to refine that crude into the sweet sweet lubricants, chemicals, and plastics we love so much. Energy was also spent to manufacture the machines that drill and pump and transport the oil.

I remember drawing up a plan for this on ats years ago. Surely this would be the best way of producing hydrogen, which yields much higher results than gasoline as far as personal conveyance is concerned.



posted on Aug, 3 2013 @ 08:37 AM
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There are several of these sites that run turbines. During my testing i found that hooking solar panels directly to your hho cells is the most efficient way. Panels hooked to an inverter and grid seem to barely transfer from the sun but when hooked to hho cells it will melt every wire in the system and the cells seem to be overloaded with energy. Just a huge difference in production. in the system shown in the op most of the energy is spent separating the hydrogen and oxygen compared to a point of use system. i hope it works but when we have the engines to run off of hho the site will be null unless they separate all the gasses and bottle them.



posted on Aug, 6 2013 @ 12:39 PM
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This reminded me of that crystal that can stop light for about 10 seconds? Damn I cant remember which thread it is!!! Does anyone know? With that they can trap light and use it as an energy source, and unlimited engergy source..Im going to look for the link.



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