National Science Center
Kharkov Institute of Physics and Technology

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Science and Production Establishment
Renewable Energy Sources and
Sustainable Technologies
(SPE RESST)

Hydrogen energy

At present the hydrogen energy problems arouse great interest in the world and are very important for Ukraine in connection with search of alternative sustainable renewable energies.

As a fuel material for hydrogen power engineering it is proposed to use hydrogen extracted from sulfide hydrogen H2S which pollutes the Black Sea’s offshore zone from the depth of 150…200 m and to the depth of about 2 km. The estimates of [1,16] show that these practically infinite naturally renewable resources of hydrogen sulfide (~50 billions tones for the annual ingress of ~ 5 million tones) can give a considerable contribution into the energy balance of Ukraine (up to 10% of the energy produced by Ukrainian NPPs) with parallel solving of ecological-and-social problems of the Black Sea region.

In 2006 SPE RESST has started the complex investigations on the problems of industrial use of hydrogen sulfide from the Black Sea water and the development of the design concept of the Hydrogen Sulfide Energy-Generating Complex (HSEGC). Analysis has shown [1] that the economically sound hydrogen sulfide utilization in the hydrogen power industry is possible only on the condition of solving a set of technological tasks including the following: (a) lifting of H2S saturated water masses from profound depths, (b) extraction of hydrogen sulfide from water, (c) hydrogen separation from H2S with subsequent sulfur recovering and (d) return of the cleaned water into the sea with a maximum energy recuperation.

The energy-saving problems arise at these three stages from which the first one is the most energy-consuming. For lifting of hydrogen-sulfide saturated water masses we have proposed to use physical principles of flow-lift energy-efficient technologies that are widely applied in the gas-and-oil producing industry. The developed hydrodynamic model has shown that the flow lift can be realized due to the natural hydrogen-sulfide gas saturation of waters taking into account its concentration gradient throughout the depth. Within the framework of this model the phenomenon of hysteresis dependence of the pressure in the flow lift on its immersion depth is predicted. Also, there estimated is the pressure drop in the lift (~0.1 MPa that corresponds to the saturated water lifting at a height up to 10 m)  and the possibility of further recuperation of the lifted water mass energy using the energy-saving equipment.

To solve the problems of hydrogen recovery from H2S the methods of hydrogen sulfide radiolysis are considered [17]. It is shown that these methods are high-efficient for hydrogen recovery (to 50%) under action of ionizing radiation in the presence of carbon oxide. The efficiency of irradiation technology of hydrogen sulfide processing is calculated, the parameters of a required radiation source are determined, the absorbed dose values and the radiation yield of processed products are evaluated.

Besides the technologies of hydrogen recovery the methods of its accumulation and storage were studied [2,3,18] for the purpose of its applications as a secondary energy carrier and motor fuel. Particular attention is given to analysis of advantages of the metal-hydride method and perspectives of the use of carbon-base nanostructures for hydrogen storage. In cooperation with the Institute of Solid State Physics, Materials Science and Technologies (ISSPMST NSC KIPT) the kinetics of hydrogen sorption-desorption by the zirconium alloy, having a complex stoichiometry, was studied depending on the temperature. The first experimental results were obtained and the effect of alloy activation due to the first hydrogen saturation was discovered [18].
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