The Hydrogen Economy: Hope or Hype?

  • Start  Tuesday 11 Mar 2014 2:00pm
  • Finish    Tuesday 11 Mar 2014 3:00pm
  • Venue  Chemistry Lecture Theatre in the Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory,

Bill David

ISIS Facility, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, OX11 0QX
Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3QR

Energy production and energy security issues make headline news but “the role for energy storage is poorly described in many pathways to a low-carbon economy”. For most of the first decade of the 21st century, hydrogen was considered to be the long-term energy storage solution particularly for fuel-cell based transportation. However, the failure to discover a hydrogen storage material that matched the multiple prerequisite criteria coupled with issues associated with fuel cells, hydrogen production and, perhaps most significantly, the huge costs of a hydrogen infrastructure led many to regard hydrogen no longer as a hope but as hype.

While much of the research focus in mobile energy storage has shifted to batteries, there remains potential to realisethe promise of the hydrogen economy through greater understanding of the reaction mechanisms that facilitate desirable hydrogen storage properties. In this talk, I will present our research on the lithium imide / lithium amide system in which lithium ion conductivity is key to the facile reversibility in this promising lightweight solid-state hydrogen store. Our search for superior alternative hydrogen stores based on this system has led us to consider a potentially more promising route for chemical energy storage that may find applications ranging from transportation to grid-balancing intermittent renewable-energy production.

Tweet link opens new window Tweet