Hydrogen Storage Technologies: Present and Future

We describe herein our recent work for the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Transportation Technologies, in which we evaluated several methods of hydrogen storage from the perspective of fuel cell powered vehicles. Given our goal of providing DOE with demonstration hardware within the next year and a half, we focused on those technologies now available or predictably available soon. As we did, we encountered several developing technologies, some of which may hold promise.

The criteria for hydrogen storage aboard fuel cell powered vehicles differ from those for hydrogen storage aboard IC engine powered vehicles. IC engines generate waste heat at higher temperatures, and in greater amount, than do the fuel cells under consideration for transportation applications; this is the flip side of the relatively high efficiency of fuel cells. Thus, IC engines are more suited than are fuel cells to the generally endothermic demands of dehydriding.

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