Nuclear Production of Hydrogen

Fourth Information Exchange Meeting, Oakbrook, Illinois, USA , 14-16 April 2009

image of Nuclear Production of Hydrogen

Hydrogen has the potential to play an important role as a sustainable and environmentally acceptable energy carrier in the 21st century. This report describes the scientific and technical challenges associated with the production of hydrogen using heat and/or electricity from nuclear power plants, with special emphasis on recent developments in high-temperature electrolysis and the use of different chemical thermodynamic processes. Economics and market analysis as well as safety aspects of the nuclear production of hydrogen are also discussed.



Development of CuCl-HCl electrolysis for hydrogen production via Cu-Cl thermochemical cycle

Nuclear Energy Agency

The Cu-Cl thermochemical cycle is among the most attractive technologies proposed for hydrogen production due to moderate temperature requirements and high efficiency. In the present study, one of the main steps of the cycle – H2 gas production via CuCl-HCl electrolysis – was investigated using a newly designed electrolyser system. The electrolysis reaction was performed with the applied voltage from 0.35 to 0.9 V. The current efficiency of the electrolysis system was evaluated based on the observed rate of hydrogen production. The effects of temperature and reagent flow rate on the electrolysis performance were studied. Several types of anion-exchange and cation-exchange membranes were tested in the electrolyser, and their performance was compared with respect to process efficiency and tolerance to copper crossover.


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