Hydrogen as a transport fuel

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  • Published: November 2017
  • REF/ISBN: 9781527215795
  • Edition: 1st
  • Status: New

For many decades, interest in the future of hydrogen as a transport fuel has been no more than mild, but recent announcements by governments and auto manufacturers re the phasing out of new petroleum-fuelled vehicles has propelled this fuel to the fore as the next important player in the transport world.

This review aims to help update all those interested in the progress being made towards the introduction of this fuel as the optimal alternative for the near future.

Electric propulsion is rapidly penetrating the road and aviation sectors of transport, with the energy provided on-board either by batteries or the fuel-engine-generator route in contrast to the conventional direct fuel-engine-mechanical transmission.

In parallel with improvements in battery capacity in the first 17 years of this Century, developments in the fuel route have centralized into hydrogen, carried on board as a gas or liquid.

Although abundant in the biosphere, hydrogen does not exist in bulk as an independent element, hence it must be derived from natural hydrides, resulting in its role as a carrier, rather than a source, of energy. The primary hydride source is water, but the production downside is the need for the equivalent of the ultimate combustion energy to be supplied beforehand to release the hydrogen by electrolysis. Currently, conventional hydrocarbon sources are used commercially, and are likely to remain of interest while they still last.

This report comprises concise abstracts, with their references and conclusions, of over 200 items of literature concerning advances in hydrogen production, storage and performance during the last 17 years.

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