The academician considers the production of hydrogen from gas to be the most profitable
Academician Valentin Parmon, the Global Energy Prize laureate, President of Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences said that the production of hydrogen from gas is currently the most economically profitable.
“The cheapest thing now is to get hydrogen from natural gas. It's a process that produces millions, I may be mistaken, even tens of millions of tons per year - of non-marketable hydrogen, it is used in chemical plants,” Parmon said during his interview with the Global Energy Association, which was presenting its new annual compilation of “10 breakthrough ideas in the energy industry for the next 10 years”.
According to the academician, this hydrogen is used to produce ammonia and nitric acid. "This is what Russia is famous for, we get a lot of hydrogen, a lot of hydrogen goes to get high quality motorised hydrocarbon fuels. The technology is not bad here," Parmon noted.
The scientist pointed out that electrolytic hydrogen technologies are quite well developed in Russia, but they are expensive due to the cost of electricity. "As far as solar energy is concerned, it's one of the areas of electrolysis. There are non-electrolysis directions, but they are more complex. The international science should not stop at some particular, already proven method, because the possibility of unexpected breakthroughs always exists," he added.
Parmon said that he was a member of Gazprom's Scientific and Technical Council. "The issue of Gazprom entering the hydrogen energy sector is being discussed very actively there. This is a correct, cautious concept. The issue of using hydrogen as an additive to conventional fuel can already be solved now," said the laureate.
Parmon also noted that the situation with the extraction of hydrogen from coal is very deplorable in Russia. "In coal, the main direction is large-scale coal chemical processing, unfortunately, not hydrogen, there should be consumers for it," - added the academician.
According to Parmon, to get clean energy from coal, you need to consider the cost of cleaning systems, which increases the cost of electricity production by 40-50%. "We need to balance interests of society, and all our energy carriers are capable of producing hydrogen," he highlighted.
In addition, the transportation of the received hydrogen is a big problem. "After the collapse of the USSR Russia lost the most important production facilities related to the possibility of liquid hydrogen transportation. It was fueled by "Buran", the so - called “para-hydrogen”, which was received in Uzbekistan, in Chirchik. This cryogenic technology has not been replicated anywhere else; it puts liquid hydrogen in a state where it does not evaporate", the scientist explained.
At Baikonur Cosmodrome such hydrogen was transported by tanks. Now there are no such facilities left in Uzbekistan, they are completely destroyed. "I have raised this issue, but it is not yet systematically resolved, although we have begun to restore these technologies and are ready to work on it. This is high-tech, but it's probably the most sensible way to work with large amounts of hydrogen," Parmon said.
According to the scientist the intermediate systems are another way of transporting hydrogen, they can absorb hydrogen and then release it when needed. There are many such sorbents, the best ones for hydrogen are highly dispersed carbon materials. They can store a lot of hydrogen, the scientist said.