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High Efficiency Generation of Hydrogen Fuels Using Solar Thermochemical Splitting of Water

Description: The objective of this work is to identify economically feasible concepts for the production of hydrogen from water using solar energy. The ultimate project objective was to select one or more competitive concepts for pilot-scale demonstration using concentrated solar energy. Results of pilot scale plant performance would be used as foundation for seeking public and private resources for full-scale plant development and testing. Economical success in this venture would afford the public with a renewable and limitless source of energy carrier for use in electric power load-leveling and as a carbon-free transportation fuel. The Solar Hydrogen Generation Research (SHGR) project embraces technologies relevant to hydrogen research under the Office of Hydrogen Fuel Cells and Infrastructure Technology (HFCIT) as well as concentrated solar power under the Office of Solar Energy Technologies (SET). Although the photoelectrochemical work is aligned with HFCIT, some of the technologies in this effort are also consistent with the skills and technologies found in concentrated solar power and photovoltaic technology under the Office of Solar Energy Technologies (SET). Hydrogen production by thermo-chemical water-splitting is a chemical process that accomplishes the decomposition of water into hydrogen and oxygen using only heat or a combination of heat and electrolysis instead of pure electrolysis and meets the goals for hydrogen production using only water and renewable solar energy as feed-stocks. Photoelectrochemical hydrogen production also meets these goals by implementing photo-electrolysis at the surface of a semiconductor in contact with an electrolyte with bias provided by a photovoltaic source. Here, water splitting is a photo-electrolytic process in which hydrogen is produced using only solar photons and water as feed-stocks. The thermochemical hydrogen task engendered formal collaborations among two universities, three national laboratories and two private sector entities. The photoelectrochemical hydrogen task included formal collaborations with three universities and one national laboratory. The ...
Date: September 29, 2011
Creator: Heske, Clemens; Moujaes, Samir; Weimer, Alan; Wong, Bunsen; Siegal, Nathan; McFarland, Eric et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department