A few days back I had talked about using hydrogen slurry as a liquid storage and transportation medium that may be more efficient that using compressed H2 gas. Now, another manufacturer of a hydrogen-rich liquid compound has come to my attention that may also offer answers towards building a sensible hydrogen infrastructure at lower costs.
A company named Asemblon has developed a liquid hydrogen compound they call Hydrnol that can be distributed nationwide using the current infrastructure of trucks, pipelines and tankers. Crude oil can be used for the feedstock (this wouldn’t help with energy independence, however) though ethanol or biomass is preferred.
The Hydrnol runs through a Liquid Release Module (LRM) where it comes in with a heated catalyst that releases the hydrogen for use by a hydrogen auto or vehicle. Once the hydrogen is released from the fuel, it becomes a dehydrogenated organic liquid (DOL) that needs to be recycled and have the hydrogen integrated back in it for future use.
In 2007, it was estimated that the total cost to manufacture, transport and store the Hydrnol would be around $2.50 per gallon equivalent. This is much cheaper than current prices for compressed hydrogen or cryogenic liquid hydrogen.
For those who don’t want to reinvent the wheel in regard to building a new hydrogen auto fueling infrastructure, using a hydrogen rich liquid chemical compound may just be the alternative for which we’ve been looking.