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Recent Developments on Hydrogen Production Technologies: State-of-the-Art Review with a Focus on Green-Electrolysis


Growing human activity has led to a critical rise in global energy consumption; since the current main sources of energy production are still fossil fuels, this is an industry linked to the generation of harmful byproducts that contribute to environmental deterioration and climate change. One pivotal element with the potential to take over fossil fuels as a global energy vector is renewable hydrogen; but, for this to happen, reliable solutions must be developed for its carbon-free production. The objective of this study was to perform a comprehensive review on several hydrogen production technologies, mainly focusing on water splitting by green-electrolysis, integrated on hydrogen’s value chain. The review further deepened into three leading electrolysis methods, depending on the type of electrolyzer used—alkaline, proton-exchange membrane, and solid oxide—assessing their characteristics, advantages, and disadvantages. Based on the conclusions of this study, further developments in applications like the efficient production of renewable hydrogen will require the consideration of other types of electrolysis (like microbial cells), other sets of materials such as in anion-exchange membrane water electrolysis, and even the use of artificial intelligence and neural networks to help design, plan, and control the operation of these new types of systems.

Funding source: This research was funded by Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia (FCT), grant number UIDB/50021/2020.
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Portugal

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