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hydrogen from nuclear? November 29, 2004 7:26 PM

http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,11543621%255E1702,00.html 'Breakthrough' on hydrogen fuel From correspondents in Washington November 30, 2004 US scientists had made a breakthrough in their quest to make low-cost hydrogen, a technology key to finding new sources of energy to end US dependence on foreign oil, they said. US President George W. Bush last year announced a $US1.2-billion ($1.55 billion) plan to develop hydrogen-powered cars to decrease US dependency on foreign oil. Researchers from the US government's Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INELL) and the private company Ceramatec Inc said a computer model showed they could separate hydrogen from hot water by using a nuclear reactor. The method would yield more hydrogen than does electrolysis, which runs electricity through water to separate hydrogen and oxygen. The conversion rate of water into hydrogen ranged between 45 and 50 per cent in high temperatures, compared with about 30 per cent in electrolysis, the researchers said. "This is a breakthrough ... (and) a crucial first step toward large-scale production of hydrogen from water, rather than from fossil fuels," Stephen Herring, consulting engineer at INELL, said. The nuclear reactor method should be cheaper and more environmentally friendly, he said. However, the method works with Generation IV nuclear reactors, which the United States no longer makes. Agence France-Presse  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
 December 06, 2004 8:43 PM

Hmm... It doesn't sound like the best idea. Why can't we generate the hydrogen with renewable electricity through electrolysis? This could cause increased demand for solar panels, etc. and drive the development of more efficient technologies.  [ send green star]  [ accepted]
 
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