Electrolysis is one way to create hydrogen. Apply sufficient energy to water, and disassociate it into hydrogen and oxygen. Recombine the hydrogen and oxygen later, and generate energy with only water vapor as pollution. The energy required for electrolysis, however, is high enough that the process only makes sense when trying to lower pollution in specific areas (like tunnels or urban centers) or where storing the energy in the potential between hydrogen and oxygen is better than in a battery (like in rockets.) Now, an innovative filter has been designed using carbon fiber coated with a catalyst of molybdenum sulfide. Typical filters use platinum, which is expensive. Carbon, molybdenum, and sulfur are all much less expensive.
“One hundred grams of pure molybdenum metal costs $44, while the same amount of platinum costs $3,211.86 today,” says study co-author Bin Liu, a materials scientist at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.
If a similarly cheap source of oxygen is found, then the use of fuel cells and hydrogen vehicles becomes much more feasible economically, which is good environmentally. It will also enable self-powered marine applications like ships and shoreline power.
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