Researchers from the Netherlands, China, Japan and Singapore have developed a method to increase electrolysis throughput per unit of volume with a factor of 20. Think a 10 MW electrolyzer device with the size of a standard household fridge. Keyword: nanocages of an alloy of nickel and platinum. The key to success is essentially a radical increase of active catalyst surface achieved with nano-technology.
On top of that, the breakthrough is achieved with a cheaper catalyst; no longer pure, expensive and rare platinum needs to be used, but an alloy with cheap nickel works even better than is possible with present day state-of-the-art platinum catalysts. The expectation is that hydrogen industry will be able to develop a commercial electrolyzer of 10 MW capacity, with merely the size of a fridge. This device could for instance absorb the output of a large offshore 10 MW wind turbine and transform the electricity “on the spot”. Alternatively, such an electrolyzer could be installed in residential areas, absorbing solar electricity from panels installed on roofs, thereby greatly reducing grid load.
[phys.org] – Storing energy in hydrogen 20 times more effective using platinum-nickel catalyst
[greencarcongress.com] – Bunched Pt-Ni alloy nanocages as efficient catalysts for fuel cells
[tue.nl] – Energie opslaan in waterstof 20 keer effectiever met katalysator van platina-nikkel
The catalyst can be used both in electrolysis as well as fuel cell mode.
[source] Professor Emiel Hensen, with the XPS setup (Near Ambient Pressure X-Ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy) Molecular Catalysis, inorganic materials chemistry, Scheikundige Technologie, Technische Universiteit Eindhoven
[iflscience.com] – Nanocages That Split Water Seventeen Times Faster Might Be Hydrogen’s Big Bang
[deingenieur.nl] – Minder platina nodig in waterstofauto’s
[engineersonline.nl] – Energie opslaan in waterstof 20 keer effectiever met katalysator van platina-nikkel
[delta.tudelft.nl] – Brandstofcellen kunnen met minder platina toe
[wikipedia.org] – Electrolysis of water
[tue.nl] – Insituut for renewable energy storage
[iflscience.com] – There Could Be A Magnetic Solution To Building The Hydrogen Economy
Perhaps nanocages and magnetism could be combined to increase productivity even more.