November 23rd, 2006
Hydrogen is being heralded as the next biggest fuel resource, if only it could be handled safely. You see, if you use a hydrogen-powered device, say a car or a phone, you would encounter problems recharging your system because gaseous hydrogen is costly to store, move, and quite tedious to put in. Scientists have looked at reforming the hydrocarbons back to hydrogen for fuel use, and scientists from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have designed and built ceramic micro reactors that could do just that.
According to Paul Kenis, professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering at the University of Illinois, their research has led to the development of an integrated catalyst structure that successfully strips hydrogen from ammonia at temperatures of up to 500 degrees Celsius. The future outcome? On-site recharging hydrogen fuel cars and other electronic devices.