A new energy-efficient method developed by a team of WSU scientists to locally produce hydrogen gas from ethanol and water has the potential to make clean hydrogen fuel a more viable alternative to fossil fuels.

Louis Scudiero.

“Our technology produces pure hydrogen at high pressure with high efficiency and at a low energy cost while also capturing the carbon dioxide by-product,” said Louis Scudiero, professor of chemistry and co-author of a paper on the research published in the journal Applied Catalysis A.

Like electric battery-powered cars, hydrogen fuel-cell cars don’t emit harmful carbon dioxide during operation and, like traditional gasoline-powered cars, hydrogen-powered cars can be refilled in minutes.

Despite its potential, the technology’s market penetration is very low. Delivery of compressed hydrogen gas to consumers is a significant stumbling block. The economic and safety challenges involved in transporting and storing large volumes of high-pressure hydrogen gas means there is little appropriate infrastructure in the U.S.

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