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Carbon Dioxide Capture and Hydrogen Production from Gaseous Fuels

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Improving hydrogen production

An EU-funded initiative investigated efficient means of capturing carbon dioxide from hydrogen production. Advances in this area will bring Europe one step closer to a viable hydrogen economy.


To create a sustainable hydrogen economy, an important option is to develop viable technology that captures and stores carbon dioxide (CO2) when producing hydrogen. The project 'Carbon dioxide capture and hydrogen production from gaseous fuels' (Cachet) looked at how to halve the cost of capturing CO2 and producing hydrogen from natural gas. It considered four different approaches: advanced stream methane reforming, redox technologies, metal membranes and sorption-enhanced water gas shift. The project team tested each concept and assessed economic viability, setting up a specific reactor for experiments. It also worked on another necessary process related to chemical looping, achieving success with the one-step decarbonisation approach. Other tests identified specific materials for the process and upgrading of existing technology such as palladium membranes and sorption-enhanced water gas shift (SEWGS) unit. All four approaches were tested for safety, environmental and economic considerations. Cachet finally homed in on several different promising technology combinations from the 55 that were examined. It outlined seven important proposals and technologies to upgrade the sector and yield more efficient results over established systems. These seven proposals included reactor upgrades using nitrogen recirculation, innovative burners for heat exchange, new processes to capture and recycle CO2 and new methods for chemical looping reforming. They also addressed improvement of decarbonisation, membrane fabrication, SEWGS cycles and other key areas to upgrade hydrogen production. These proposals will surely support the development of the hydrogen economy and speed it up.

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