Facts about Hydrogen

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1.Hydrogen Composition

A hydrogen atom contains a single proton and a single electron. Hydrogen gas features a diatomic molecule with each molecule having two hydrogen atoms. It combines well with other elements and forms part of other substances such as hydrocarbons, water and alcohol.

2.The Most Abundant and Lightest Gas in the Universe

Hydrogen is the most abundant, simplest and light element found in the universe.  About a third of hydrogen chemical elements are composed of hydrogen. It is much lighter than air, about 14 times light. Under ambient conditions, Hydrogen is in gaseous form while in cryogenic condition, it is liquid.

3.Production of Hydrogen

Hydrogen may be generated using diverse ways. These include use of domestically available resources such as fossil fuels like coal and natural gas, biomass and nuclear. Hydrogen can be produced using other renewable energy innovations like geothermal, solar, wind and hydro-electric power.

4.Transportation of Hydrogen

In the US, pipelines are used to transport hydrogen safely over a distance of more than 700 miles. In addition, a huge amount of liquefied hydrogen is transported using trucks through highways across the US. About 70 million gallons of hydrogen are carried by trucks free of major incidents.

5.Hydrogen is Produced along with Oil in the US

In the US, hydrogen production is done along with production of oil. Most oil production rakes place in the states of Texas, California and Louisiana. These three states also happen to be the major centers of hydrogen production in the US.

6.Common Hydrogen Applications

About 58 percent of all hydrogen generated today in the US is used in purification of gasoline. Hydrogen is also a common ingredient in processing of food stuffs, fertilizer production as well as production of consumer products such as laundry detergents and tooth pastes. There are ongoing explorations on the use of hydrogen as fuel in passenger vehicles because of its ability to burn as fuel in internal combustion engines or fuel cells that in turn power electric motors.

 7.Hydrogen is an Eco-Friendly Element

Hydrogen is an environmentally friendly, non-toxic element with potential of significantly reducing human reliance on oil. It does not produce greenhouse gases or air pollutants when used as fuel in cells. When used to burn internal combustion engines, hydrogen only produces nitrogen oxide. However, it is available on only a few locations but there are plans to set up more hydrogen stations in future.

8.US Hydrogen Production Capacity

In the US, 65% of hydrogen is generated through refinery activities relating to petrochemical production and petroleum refining. An additional 27% is generated by methanol and ammonia plants. From 1999 to 2006, the capacity for petrochemical production reduced due to high costs of natural gas. Ammonia and methanol production also reduced by 35% and 86% respectively over the same period.

9.Hydrogen Carries Energy

Hydrogen is not a source of energy. Rather, it is a carrier of energy. Hydrogen stores and delivers energy in usable form even though it typically does not exist in nature on its own. It has to be generated from the compounds that it contains.

10.Hydrogen Carries Less Energy Compared to Gasoline/Diesel

Compared to diesel or gasoline, hydrogen contains less energy per-volume.  This makes it hard to store sufficient hydrogen to run machinery compared to gasoline.  Some vehicles designed to use hydrogen have shown ranges that compare to conventional vehicles of about 300 and 400 miles in between fill-ups. However, this needs to be attainable across varying vehicle models and makes without necessarily compromising on cost, performance, space, and safely.

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