Re: Hydrogen economy leads to environmental disaster???

Posted by Mike Kremer on Feb 18, 2002 at 09:24 (

Re: Hydrogen economy leads to environmental disaster (Dale)

Its just as well that none of you are employed by a goverment 'thinktank' or a Company doing pure research. The last thing you need is bickering and blundering around useing all the old standard ideas, formulae and calculations in trying to come up with a unique viable energy concept.
Dale, Morgan and Bobba are all guilty of hanging on to the old ideas. Hydrogen locked up in coal? The best source of Hydrogen is the Ocean? The balance is perfectly returned when it is combusted? Compress it to an energy density comparable to gasoline?
Why compress and combust it...are you thinking of driving an old fashioned car with pistons?
(Well at least you wouldnt get any pollution -just plain old fashioned water)
Incitentaly Carbon soot CO2 and pollution from power stations finds its way back into the sea where it is used by the upper layer microbes and sunlight to produce prodigious amounts of Oxygen. The deeper dea unsunlit microbes use a different method to utilise the CO2 and
provide further food and energy for ocean life. One wonders just how much Carbon really does fall to the bottom, commonly called the Carbon sink?
Everything is useable -its for us to find out how we can best us this energy.
But i digress. The best source of Hydrogen is the Universe, being the most common element.
Although it has but one Proton and One Electron it seems to be quite difficult to work with.
Lets try to think uniquely using lateral thinking. Has Hydrogen been liquified? Yes way back in the 1880 by J Dewar. Has it been solidified? Yes by the same guy.
So i think you will agree that in that state Hydrogen has more power output than liquid
gasoline (lets assume for the sake of argument the power input to convert crude oil and the extraction of Hydrogen from the atmosphere are roughly equal.)
It would seem reasonable to suppose that if we can use the most common substance in the Universe as a power source we would have no more problems.
Buit there is another thought i have not mentioned. Can Hydrogen exist naturally as a metal?
It can and it does...inside planet Jupiter, (one of the reasons of Jupiters high magnetic field). Have we ever made Metallic Hydrogen here on Earth. Yes we conducts electricity (Superconducts,without resistance) In 1984 attemps were made to produce metalic Hydrogen by squeezing the liquid between diamond anvils up to 500 gigapascals, unfortunataly the liguid diffused rapidly out between the walls of the anvil.
In 1991 liguid hydrogen mwas metallized using a two stage breech loading gunpowder gun at the Lawrence Livermore National Labs. A projectile travelling at 16,000 miles per hour squeezed liquid Hydrogen between two sapphire plates, producing metallic Hydrogen for 100 nano seconds! Eureka.
Now the boffins are making Hydrogen metal using laser pulses that produce a shock wave of about 100 gigapascals. That allows the metal to remain metallic for a lot longer, for testing to be carried out while its a metal.
Again here is where our lateral thinking should come to the foreground.
Remember how Carbon can be squeezed into Diamond, and remaining so even after the pressure is released? Its more than possible that the same could be done with Hydrogen so that the metal retained its crystaline structure after pressure was removed. It might be very difficult, due to its strong van der Waals forces, (its molecules tend to push strongly away from each other once pressure is released)
BUT what about an additive/s that could be added to 'cage' and hold the Hydrogen molecules and atoms together once the pressure is released. Thats not an immpossible project or concept.I was reading recently about Hydrogen in the form of Deturium and Tritium pellets that could be used in Fusion confinement.
Nothing is impossible but new ways of thinking need to be found. Negative or vacuum quenching just might work....That is something similar to the manufacture of Palladium metallic glass.
Made today using Boron and Phosphorous as additives, that is very rapidly quenched squeezing the Palladiu7m metal into a glassy clear lattice.
I have been out of the Glass fibre research industry for over five years now but i assure you, that there are many scientific wonders just around the corner. Its is only very often a question of how nessesary the new techniques become realistic, as the old techniques become outdated outmoded unworkable or run out.
I predict that solid metallic Hydrogen could store large amounts of energy which would be released when the solid reverted to the gas phase, it would be totally enviromentaly clean
and would undoubtedly replace gasoline and other transportation fluids. Since in its metallic state it will produce at least 5 times as much energy (per kilogram, (estimated)) as our existing oxy-hydrogen space vehicles. When you realise a large passenger liner will only move six inches on a gallon of diesel fuel! What innefficient watse. Yes we would have to build lightweight easy rolling automobiles whether we used metallic hydrogen as the fuel or permeated hydrogen gas thru a fuel cell to produce its electro motive power....But thats a small price to pay for the massive clean up of the atmosphere that would be the result.
(ecuse the spellings etc. no time for correctns)

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