Aqueous fuel to revolutionize hydrogen transport and refuelling: Page 2 of 5

March 25, 2019 //By Julien Happich
Aqueous fuel to revolutionize hydrogen transport and refuelling
Australian-Israeli startup company Electriq~Global aims to simplify the hydrogen transport and refuelling infrastructure thanks to a safe water-based and hydrogen-rich fuel it developed together with a catalytic system that efficiently releases hydrogen on demand for any third-party fuel cells.

“Today, at H2 filling stations, we see a 50% potential cost reduction in infrastructure. It is extremely expensive to build an H2 filling station to receive hydrogen, with special containers and compressors, and it takes a lot of energy to compress hydrogen at 700 bars.

Gasoline and Electriq~Fuel's distribution
chains side by side.

An additional cost contributor for H2, 35% comes from the need to compress it, requiring special truck trailers which are expensive and limited to 200 bars in pressure. In our case, we only need a regular truck with plastic containers to transport our water-based fuel”.

Another cost-cutter described by Michrowski is that half of the hydrogen generated from the Electriq~Fuel comes from H2O in the mixture, and the other half from BH4. This means that in order to produce the fuel, the company only needs to pay for half of the hydrogen it will deliver in its fuel, the other half, water, being virtually free.

“And we have a fuel regenerating process. When you sum up all these cost-cutting measures, you could go under $6/kg for the end consumer at the filling station” explained the CEO.

After the Electriq~Fuel has released its hydrogen in contact with the catalyst (branded as Electriq~Switch) the spent fuel is captured and taken back to a plant where it is replenished with hydrogen and water for re-use.

In the company’s literature, the Electriq~Fuel is described as being composed of 60% water and 40% of a chemical mix consisting primarily of the BH4 salt chemical. The solution is inorganic, and when put into contact with the catalyst, hydrolysis provides 50% of the hydrogen while the decomposition of boron hydride provides another 50%. The spent fuel consists of water and BO2.

The only outputs are hydrogen and heat and if it were to use renewable energy to recycle its fuel, the company could boast a zero emission footprint for its technology, only drawing low purity industrial H2 to replenish the spent fuel.

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