Nuclear Production of Hydrogen

Second Information Exchange Meeting -- Argonne, Illinois, USA 2-3 October 2003

image of Nuclear Production of Hydrogen

Hydrogen has the potential to play an important role as a sustainable and environmentally acceptable source of energy in the 21st century. Present methods for producing hydrogen are mainly based on the reforming of fossil fuels with subsequent release of greenhouse gases. To avoid producing greenhouse gases, the possibility to use heat and surplus electricity from nuclear power plants to produce hydrogen by water cracking is being investigated. This report presents the state of the art in the nuclear production of hydrogen and describes the scientific and technical challenges associated with it.



Hydrogen Production through High-temperature Electrolysis in a Solid Oxide Cell

Nuclear Energy Agency

An experimental research programme is being conducted by the INEEL and Ceramatec, Inc., to test the high-temperature, electrolytic production of hydrogen from steam using a solid oxide cell. The research team is designing and testing solid oxide cells for operation in the electrolysis mode, producing hydrogen using a high-temperature heat and electrical energy. The high-temperature heat and the electrical power would be supplied simultaneously by a high-temperature nuclear reactor. Operation at high temperature reduces the electrical energy requirement for electrolysis and also increases the thermal efficiency of the power-generating cycle. The high-temperature electrolysis process will utilise heat from a specialised secondary loop carrying a steam/hydrogen mixture...


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