Hydrogen-as a Fuel
In the ever-increasing demands for fuel and energy, the conventional sources are getting exhausted. Hydrogen may come to our rescue in the near future. Researches are being carried out in many countries, including India (at Banaras Hindu University and Indian Institute of Technology), to make use of hydrogen as a fuel and an energy carrier. Here are some reasons that favour hydrogen as the ultimate fuel of the future:
- Crude oil and natural gas are available in a limited supply. Hydrogen, in the form of water, is abundant.
- Hydrogen can be readily manufactured.
- Hydrogen can be substituted for most fuels that are now in use.
- The products of combustion are either non-polluting or at least less polluting.
- Using hydrogen is more economical. For example, if 1 ton of coal is converted to gasoline fuel, electricity fuel, methanol fuel and hydrogen fuel, it can run a bus 700 km, 770 km, 830 km and 1020 km, respectively.
- Hydrogen is both a storage and transport energy medium that can connect the energy source to the energy consumer.
- Hydrogen acts as an agent through which a primary energy source (nuclear, solar) can be stored, transmitted, and utilized to fulfill the present as well as future energy requirements.