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Technology Commercialisation Opportunity

Efficient Hydrogen generation for renewable energy storage and transmission

Proton Conducting Electrolyser H 2O in H2 out H+ O2 out

Electricity In
High temperature electrolysis is more efficient than at low temperature Proton conducting membranes produce pure, dry hydrogen ready for use. Gives more effective generation when coupled with intermittent renewable energy generation

Background to Hydrogen generation for renewable energy storage and transmission

Renewable electricity from sources such as wind, tide or solar are intermittent and cannot be controlled to times of peak energy use. The most convenient method of small-scale storage is the transformation of electricity into hydrogen for later transformation back into electricity by a fuel cell. However existing electrolysers are inefficient resulting in a significant energy loss in the conversion and storage process adding to overall costs. This new technology surmounts these problems as the hydrogen production process is substantially simplified and uses apparatus of relatively economic construction. 2 New Methodology and Performance of Efficient Hydrogen generation for the renewable energy storage and transmission

Within an ongoing Research and Development project new materials and designs have been developed to electrolyse steam at 500 600 C. The elevated temperature makes the conversion process more efficient by simplifying the production need, reducing the complexity of the plant and lowering the cost of the produced hydrogen. The new designs are based on protonic conducting membranes (substantially nonpermeable to oxide ions and to molecular gas, and stable at high temperatures) able to produce pure, ready to use H2. 3 Applications

This electrolyser could be used anywhere clean, dry hydrogen needs to be produced either at the site of generation or at distributed sites near the end users. 4 Potential Market

There is an anticipated growing market of US$20 billion/year in US alone for hydrogen generation for fuel cell technology. 5 Commercial Potential

The University of St Andrews has applied for UK (GB0406818.5 and GB0427329.8) and PCT patent protection and the research group involved continues to perform Research & Development in hydrogen production and storage. There are no commercial parties involved in this research and the University would welcome enquiries from commercial parties interested in developing commercial applications of hydrogen production and storage. The University of St Andrews is looking to set up a strategic licensing and research support agreement with a company in the area of hydrogen production and storage.
Contact: Telephone: Alistair Main +44 (0) 1334 462165


Additional Information will be made available under a Confidentiality Agreement. Research and Enterprise Services, New Technology Centre, St Andrews, Fife, KY16 9SR, UK Tel: +44 (0) 1334 467244, Fax: +44 (0) 1334 462386 NCD ELECTROLYSER C