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Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Hydrogen Production Processes: Turquoise Hydrogen vs. Steam Methane Reforming


Hydrogen has received substantial attention because of its diverse application in the energy sector. Steam methane reforming (SMR) dominates the current hydrogen production and is the least expensive endothermic reaction to produce grey hydrogen. This technology provides the advantages of low cost and high energy efficiency; however, it emits an enormous amount of CO2. Carbon capture storage (CCS) technology helps reduce these emissions by 47% to 53%, producing blue hydrogen. Methane pyrolysis is an alternative to SMR that produces (ideally) CO2-free turquoise hydrogen. In practice, methane pyrolysis reduces CO2 emissions by 71% compared to grey hydrogen and 46% compared to blue hydrogen. While carbon dioxide emissions decrease with CCS, fugitive methane emissions (FMEs) for blue and turquoise hydrogen are higher than those for grey hydrogen because of the increased use of natural gas to power carbon capture. We undertake FMEs of 3.6% of natural gas consumption for individual processes. In this study, we also explore the utilization of biogas as a feedstock and additional Boudouard reactions for efficient utilization of solid carbon from methane pyrolysis and carbon dioxide from biogas. The present study focuses on possible ways to reduce overall emissions from turquoise hydrogen to provide solutions for a sustainable low-CO2 energy source.

Funding source: This work was supported by the Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT) grant funded by the Korean Government’s National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF), grant number 2021M3I3A1084772. (MSIT; No. 2021M3I3A1084772)
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Korea, Republic of

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