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Grey Hydrogen

Definition

The Grey Hydrogen, to differentiate from blue and green ones, is today the most popular process to produce hydrogen worldwide.

This method of production is based on fracking methane, in combination with steam to produce hydrogen.

This grey hydrogen process entitles large emission of carbon dioxide (CO2), one of the gas responsible for the greenhouse effect.

The conceptual formula behind the Grey Hydrogen Production

Comments

In reality, the Grey Hydrogen production as mentioned above is processed along a two step reaction of steam reforming with natural gas, and then water gas shift.

This process starts by burning a part of the methane (CH4) input to heat the other part of methane to 900°C. At this temperature, the methane in presence of steam (H2O) will crack to form hydrogen (H2) and monoxide (CO). As shown below.

Steam Reforming with Natural gas

Next step is to separate the hydrogen from the carbon monoxide (CO) produced, to re-use this product. In fact, the monoxide produced is injected into a water gas shift reaction around 400°C.

From this reaction described below, more hydrogen can be formed while limiting the emissions of monoxide (CO), an even more problematic gas than CO2 as it combines with ozone (O) in the atmosphere, thus destroying the protective ozone layer, to become CO2.

Water Gas Shift Reaction

At the end of this process, it seems a large amount of hydrogen is produced from just one molecule of methane and two of water.

Yet, this is not considering the amount of methane burnt to heat and induce the reaction, which free large amount of CO2.

To the extend, producing 1 ton of Grey Hydrogen, emits around 10 tons of Carbon Dioxide, that is the reason why this process is called Grey Hydrogen.

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2 Comments to “Grey Hydrogen”

  1. CELUI QUI GAGNERA LA CAGNOTE OFFERTE PAR 2B1st AURA TROUVE LA SOLUTION POUR BRISER LE CO OU LE CO2 EN C ET O

    PROFITEZ DES VACANCES A LA MONTAGNE
    ET ON RETOURNE QUAND AUX EMIRATS ?
    Bien sincèrement
    JJ ROYANT

    • Effectivement celui qui trouve comment séparer les éléments C et O à l’échelle industrielle aura le droit à plusieurs cagnottes!
      On espère retourner au Moyen-orient en Octobre pour PCIC Middle-East et ensuite à Abu Dhabi pour ADIPEC…
      Seul le temps nous le dira, on croise les doigts en attendant.
      Bonne vacances à vous
      Jean

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