Alternative Energy

Hydrogen Fuel News

The latest hydrogen fuel cell news from our hydrogen and fuel cell technology news sources.

May 27, 2020

Hydrogen Fuel Cells

Microbial cyborgs: Bacteria supplying power

May 26, 2020: Electronic devices are still made of lifeless materials. One day, however, 'microbial cyborgs' might be used in fuel cells, biosensors, or bioreactors. Scientists have created the necessary prerequisite by developing a programmable, biohybrid system consisting of a nanocomposite and the Shewanella oneidensis bacterium that produces electrons. The material serves as a scaffold for the bacteria and, at the same time, conducts the microbially produced current.

A spreadable interlayer could make solid state batteries more stable

May 19, 2020: Solid state batteries are of great interest to the electric vehicle industry. Scientists now present a new way of bringing this promising concept closer to application. An interlayer, made of a spreadable, 'butter-like' material helps improve the current density tenfold, while also increasing performance and safety.

Electrolysis: Chemists have discovered how to produce better electrodes

May 14, 2020: Another step forward for renewable energies: The production of green hydrogen could be even more efficient in the future. By applying an unusual process step, chemists have found a way to treat inexpensive electrode materials and considerably improve their properties during electrolysis.

Coordination polymer glass provides solid support for hydrogen fuel cells

May 13, 2020: Scientists are synthesizing stronger and more efficient materials for hydrogen fuel cell membranes. Most fuel cells currently on the market employ liquid membranes. A new coordination polymer glass membrane works just as well as its liquid counterparts with added strength and flexibility.

The role of European policy for improving power plant fuel efficiency

May 8, 2020: A new study investigates the impact of the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS), the largest international cap-and-trade system for greenhouse gas emissions in the world, on power plant fuel efficiency.

Investigating the dynamics of stability

May 6, 2020: Scientists have gained important insight into the mechanisms that drive stability and activity in materials during oxygen evolution reactions. This insight will guide the practical design of materials for electrochemical fuel production.

Fossil fuel-free jet propulsion with air plasmas

May 5, 2020: Humans depend on fossil fuels as their primary energy source, especially in transportation. However, fossil fuels are both unsustainable and unsafe, serving as the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions. Researchers have demonstrated a prototype device that uses microwave air plasmas for jet propulsion, generating the high-temperature, high-pressure plasma in situ using only injected air and electricity.

Single-crystal electrodes can speed up design of new battery systems

May 4, 2020: Scientists have created and tested a single-crystal electrode that promises to yield pivotal discoveries for advanced batteries under development worldwide.

Water-splitting module a source of perpetual energy

May 4, 2020: Researchers have integrated high-efficiency solar cells and electrode catalysts into an efficient, low-cost device that splits water to produce hydrogen fuel.

User research at BESSY II: How new materials increase the efficiency of direct ethanol fuel cells

May 4, 2020: Researchers have investigated a novel composite membrane for ethanol fuel cells. It consists of the polymer Nafion, in which nanoparticles of a titanium compound are embedded by the rarely explored melt extrusion process.

Redox Flow Cell for Renewable Hydrogen

May 3, 2020: The COVID-19 lockdown offers plenty of chances for us to think about ways to advance the use of green hydrogen in the marketplace. One such solution comes from Nel Hydrogen and PNNL. The teams at Nel Hydrogen and also experts led by Wei Wang, the chief scientist for energy storage research at the Pacific Northwest ……

Groundbreaking new rocket-propulsion system

Apr 30, 2020: Researchers have developed an advanced new rocket-propulsion system once thought to be impossible. The system, known as a rotating detonation rocket engine, will allow upper stage rockets for space missions to become lighter, travel farther, and burn more cleanly.

Next-generation batteries take major step toward commercial viability

Apr 28, 2020: A group of researchers has found a way to stabilize one of the most challenging parts of lithium-sulfur batteries, bringing the technology closer to becoming commercially viable.

New opportunity to develop high-energy batteries

Apr 28, 2020: In recent years, lithium-ion batteries have become better at supplying energy to soldiers in the field, but the current generation of batteries never reaches its highest energy potential. Researchers are extremely focused on solving this challenge and providing the power soldiers demand.

A leap in using silicon for battery anodes

Apr 28, 2020: Scientists have come up with a novel way to use silicon as an energy storage ingredient. They've developed a nanostructure incorporating carbon nanotubes to strengthen the material and modify the way silicon interacts with lithium, a key component in batteries used in electric cars and other devices.

Researchers make key advance toward production of important biofuel

Apr 27, 2020: An international research collaboration has taken an important step toward the commercially viable manufacture of biobutanol, an alcohol whose strong potential as a fuel for gasoline-powered engines could pave the path away from fossil fuels.

Major cause of resistance in solid electrolytes

Apr 22, 2020: Scientists investigated grain boundaries in a solid electrolyte at an unprecedentedly small scale. The resulting insights provide new avenues for tuning chemical properties in the material to improve performance.

A new way to cool down electronic devices, recover waste heat

Apr 22, 2020: Using electronic devices for too long can cause them to overheat, which might slow them down, damage their components or even make them explode or catch fire. Now, researchers have developed a hydrogel that can both cool down electronics, such as cell phone batteries, and convert their waste heat into electricity.

Microwaves power new technology for batteries, energy

Apr 22, 2020: New battery technology involving microwaves may provide an avenue for renewable energy conversion and storage. Researchers created a technique to turn waste polyethylene terephthalate, one of the most recyclable polymers, into components of batteries. They use an ultrafast microwave irradiation process to turn PET, or polyethylene terephthalate, flakes into disodium terephthalate.

New scavenger technology allows robots to 'eat' metal for energy

Apr 21, 2020: New research is bridging the gap between batteries and energy harvesters like solar panels. Their 'metal-air scavenger' gets the best of both worlds.

Advancing high temperature electrolysis: Splitting water to store energy as hydrogen

Apr 21, 2020: Recently, researchers developed a new electrode material for an electrochemical cell that can efficiently convert excess electricity and water into hydrogen. When demand for electricity increases, the electrochemical cell is reversible, converting hydrogen back into electricity for the grid. The hydrogen could also be used as fuel for heat, vehicles or other applications.

New hybrid material improves the performance of silicon in Li-ion batteries

Apr 21, 2020: Researchers have developed a new hybrid material of mesoporous silicon microparticles and carbon nanotubes that can improve the performance of silicon in Li-ion batteries.

A case for chemelectricity

Apr 21, 2020: by guest blogger Stan Thompson Many of us who saw the hydrogen transition coming over two decades ago are frustrated by writers today who feel obliged to apologize for the vast amount of hydrogen that goes into fertilizer and petrochemicals.  Many of these folks probably feel they have to mention it because so many have ……

Gas storage method could help next-generation clean energy vehicles

Apr 16, 2020: A Northwestern University research team has designed and synthesized new materials with ultrahigh porosity and surface area for the storage of hydrogen and methane for fuel cell-powered vehicles. The materials, a type of a metal-organic framework (MOF), can store significantly more hydrogen and methane than conventional adsorbent materials at much safer pressures and at much lower costs. A one-gram sample of the material (with a volume of six M&Ms) has a surface area that would cover 1.3 football fields.

Harnessing the power of electricity-producing bacteria for programmable 'biohybrids'

Apr 8, 2020: Someday, microbial cyborgs -- bacteria combined with electronic devices -- could be useful in fuel cells, biosensors and bioreactors. But first, scientists need to develop materials that not only nurture the microbes, but also efficiently and controllably harvest the electricity or other resources they make. Now, researchers have developed one such material that enabled them to create a programmable 'biohybrid' system that conducts electrons from electricity-producing (exoelectrogenic) bacteria.

Hexagonal Perovskites Could Revolutionize Fuel Cell Technology

Apr 4, 2020: For some time now, much research has been put into coming up with new fuel cell technology solutions. With the importance of such technology for the future of the planet, it makes sense that people will want to make progress ASAP. The latest innovation in the fuel cell tech industry comes from the University of ……

Innovative thinner electrolyte can improve functioning of solid oxide fuel cells

Mar 25, 2020: Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) are clean and highly efficient power generation systems, which can generate electrical energy but are limited by their high operating temperatures and infrequent applications. Researchers explore how the efficiency of SOFCs can be increased by lowering their operating temperature and could be an alternative to nuclear and thermal power generation in the future.

A new dimension for promoting electrocatalysis performance by noble metal aerogels

Mar 24, 2020: Chemists have succeeded in fabricating surface-clean noble metal aerogels boosting the electrocatalysis performance by revisiting ligand chemistry.

Electric cars better for climate in 95% of the world

Mar 23, 2020: Fears that electric cars could actually increase carbon emissions are unfounded in almost all parts of the world, new research shows.

New material developed could help clean energy revolution

Mar 23, 2020: Researchers developed a promising graphene-carbon nanotube catalyst, giving them better control over hugely important chemical reactions for producing green technology and clean energy.

Nature-inspired green energy technology clears important development hurdle

Mar 19, 2020: A new material design has put the long-sought idea of using artificial photosynthesis to generate renewable fuel within reach.

Researchers Discuss Natural Hydrogen at Ohio State University

Mar 14, 2020: I’ve been talking about the world-changing effect that natural hydrogen could have on the world green economy since at least 2013. It’s easy to see why the use of naturally occurring hydrogen could be world-changing. With the clock ticking on making sure we can become more sustainable ASAP, the development of hydrogen is very much ……

'Spillway' for electrons could keep lithium metal batteries from catching fire

Mar 12, 2020: Nanoengineers developed a safety feature that prevents lithium metal batteries from rapidly overheating and catching fire in case of an internal short circuit. The clever tweak does not prevent battery failure, but rather provides advance warning of failure and makes it much safer.

Chasing lithium ions on the move in a fast-charging battery

Mar 12, 2020: Atomic distortions emerging in the electrode during operation provide a 'fast lane' for the transport of lithium ions.

Water splitting advance holds promise for affordable renewable energy

Mar 9, 2020: A team has developed a less expensive water electrolysis system that works under alkaline conditions but still produces hydrogen at comparable rates to the currently used system that works under acidic conditions and requires precious metals. This advance brings down the cost of water splitting technology, offering a more viable way to store energy from solar and wind power in the form of hydrogen fuel.

Water splitting observed on the nanometer scale

Mar 5, 2020: Hydrogen is being traded as the energy carrier of the future. To date, existing methodologies have not been able to elucidate how exactly the electrochemical process of water splitting takes place at the molecular scale on a catalyst surface. Scientists have now developed a new method to investigate such processes 'live' on the nanometer scale.

Micromotors get supercharged with three 'engines'

Mar 4, 2020: Someday, microscopic robots could perform useful functions, such as diagnostic testing in lab-on-a-chip sensors, micropatterning surfaces or repairing equipment in tight spaces. But first, scientists need to be able to tightly control the microbots' speed. Now, researchers have developed micromotors with three 'engines' that they can control separately with chemical fuel, magnets and light.

Potassium metal battery emerges as a rival to lithium-ion technology

Mar 2, 2020: Researchers demonstrate how they can overcome a persistent challenge known as dendrites to create a metal battery that performs nearly as well as a lithium-ion battery, but relies on potassium -- a much more abundant and less expensive element.

New tools show a way forward for large-scale storage of renewable energy

Mar 2, 2020: A technique based on the principles of MRI has allowed researchers to observe not only how next-generation batteries for large-scale energy storage work, but also how they fail, which will assist in the development of strategies to extend battery lifetimes in support of the transition to a zero-carbon future.

New method converts carbon dioxide to methane at low temperatures

Feb 27, 2020: Scientists developed a new method to convert carbon dioxide to methane with an electric field at low temperatures. In comparison to previous methods, this new method can produce any amount of methane whenever necessary. Because methane is a valuable gas which can be used to generate heat and electricity, this method could be exploited to help reduce the use of fossil fuels and prevent global warming.

Motley crew: Rust and light a possible answer to the conundrum of hydrogen fuel production

Feb 26, 2020: Production of hydrogen fuel is a key goal towards the development of sustainable energy practices, but this process does not have feasible techniques yet. Scientists have identified a novel technique of using rust and light to speed up hydrogen production from organic waste solution, a finding that can revolutionize the clean energy industry.

Simple self-charging battery offers power solutions for devices

Feb 25, 2020: A new type of battery combines negative capacitance and negative resistance within the same cell, allowing the cell to self-charge without losing energy, which has important implications for long-term storage and improved output power for batteries. Researchers report making their very simple battery with two different metals, as electrodes and a lithium or sodium glass electrolyte between them.

Barriers to development of seawater electrolysis technologies

Feb 19, 2020: Researchers have identified the key technological and scientific challenges of producing hydrogen through seawater electrolysis.

Advance in next-generation lithium metal batteries

Feb 18, 2020: A research team has developed a way to address a major safety issue with lithium metal batteries - an innovation that could make high-energy batteries more viable for next-generation energy storage.

Simple, fuel-efficient rocket engine could enable cheaper, lighter spacecraft

Feb 18, 2020: Researchers have developed a mathematical model that describes how rotating detonation engines work.

New catalyst recycles greenhouse gases into fuel and hydrogen gas

Feb 18, 2020: Scientists have taken a major step toward a circular carbon economy by developing a long-lasting, economical catalyst that recycles greenhouse gases into ingredients that can be used in fuel, hydrogen gas, and other chemicals. The results could be revolutionary in the effort to reverse global warming, according to the researchers.

Ultrasound device improves charge time and run time in lithium batteries

Feb 18, 2020: Researchers have developed an ultrasound-emitting device that brings lithium metal batteries, or LMBs, one step closer to commercial viability. Although the research team focused on LMBs, the device can be used in any battery, regardless of chemistry.

Iodide salts stabilize biocatalysts for fuel cells

Feb 14, 2020: Contrary to theoretical predictions, oxygen inactivates biocatalysts for energy conversion within a short time, even under a protective film. A research team has found out why: Hydrogen peroxide forms on the protective film. The addition of iodide salts to the electrolyte can prevent this from happening and considerably extend the life of the catalysts.

Honda, Isuzu Partnering Up for Fuel Cell Trucks

Feb 11, 2020:   Two auto experts, Honda and Isuzu are working together to research the development of hydrogen fuel cells that could power heavy-duty trucks. This would mean that they could turn some of the most high-emission vehicles into zero-emission vehicles. Given the importance of large trucks for transit and transport today, we need them. But we ……

New method offers more stable, efficient electrocatalytic reactions

Feb 10, 2020: By fluidizing catalyst particles in electrolyte instead of gluing them to electrodes, researchers made electrocatalytic reactions that are more efficient and longer lasting, which play an important role in energy storage.