CSIRO's work in using hydrogen for storing and transporting energy could lead to the integration into the energy value chain to support power generation – and much more.

The challenge

Realising hydrogen's energy potential

Hydrogen provides a flexible means of storing and transporting energy. Having been promoted as a 'future fuel' for a number of years, the overall understanding of hydrogen's potential is increasing. If produced and transported at scale, it could be integrated into the future energy value chain to support power generation, transport, food and agriculture, water, resources, heavy industry and more. Hydrogen could yield significant benefits for the advancement of industry, environmental sustainability and social wealth for both developed and developing nations.

Our response

CSIRO's capabilities

CSIRO's research expertise and networks mean it is well placed to address opportunities and challenges across the whole hydrogen energy value chain. CSIRO has two technologies currently under development: Catalytic Membrane Reactor; and Direct Ammonia Engine technologies.

The Catalytic Membrane Reactor can extract pure hydrogen from ammonia and there is an opportunity for this technology to be a key component of equipment and devices in ammonia-hydrogen distribution and fuelling systems.

Direct Ammonia Engine technology entails modifying standard diesel 4-stroke engines to accommodate ammonia's higher ignition temperature and low flame speed. This means ammonia can be readily used as a fuel for stationary power generation.

When combined, these technologies could enable multiple energy business models to deliver electrical power into a grid or electric vehicle charging points, and hydrogen for fuel cell vehicle refuelling. There are also potential benefits in waste heat recovery, integration of control systems, and balancing the relative electricity and hydrogen production rates in response to fluid local demands.

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