Jim Kapron, PhD.
2 min read.
- We have lots of hydrogen stored as natural gas and water.
- Carbon capture pre- or post-combustion are two interesting & exciting processes.
- Electrolysis of water is really easy, as long as things go to plan.
Hydrogen is part of Canada’s energy future. My history with hydrogen started at an early age. I electrolyzed water in the first experiment I ever did. A 9-volt battery and saltwater made a tiny bubble of hydrogen. “Fffft” went the little ball of flame and I was hooked. It’s safe to say that hydrogen started my career.
Canada has lots of hydrogen stored in our resources. Resource 1 is our abundant natural gas. We already have the infrastructure to extract, store, and transport natural gas as a reliable hydrogen carrier. Canadian companies are working to release the hydrogen and contain the carbon in two main ways. The first is the tried and true physical capture of carbon dioxide, post-combustion. The second is an exciting process where carbon is removed from methane pre-combustion to generate nothing but hydrogen.
Resource 2 is our water. Of course, we don’t want to use drinking water to generate hydrogen; that would be a waste. Gray or saltwater can be electrolyzed in the same way that I did in my parent’s basement. Canadian companies are building systems to efficiently generate hydrogen from electricity and to keep it separated from the oxygen produced. Sometimes, no oxygen is produced at all.
Summary: Canada has the resources, world-leading companies, and intelligent workers to bring this energy transition into reality. Future blog posts will discuss storage, transport, and consumption of hydrogen plus how to recuperate the resulting products. As for my first experiment, where the oxygen actually went is an entirely different story of detective work, for another blog post.
If you would like to know more about analyzing hydrogen or its impurities, in gas or liquid form,
give Novatech a shout.
About the author: Jim is a real-world scientist helping to move the BC economy forward with gas and liquid analyzers. In his off-hours, he’s involved with music and video production. Ask him a question and he’ll locate resources to find an answer.