Ocean discovery could hold secret for hydrogen storage

Finding effective and safe hydrogen storage solutions has long been a challenge for the industry, but Ancient New York ocean discovery could hold secret of hydrogen storage.

Miniscule pockets of water from the ocean that covered New York state 390 million years ago have been discovered hidden inside rocks. Researchers published findings in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters that showed ancient water trapped inside an iron pyrite framboid, so-called for its resemblance to raspberries.

The new research findings revealed that the tiny samples of sweater that have been sealed away for hundreds of millions of years could provide not only hydrogen storage knowledge, but also valuable insight about the ancient Earth’s climate and how it changed over time.

Mineral deposits can help climate scientists calculate historical temperatures as well as other features of the sea. The more minerals there are, the better chance the scientists have of uncovering important details. The scientists of this particular ancient ocean water discovery are optimistic about what they might learn as they have found an abundance of pyrite.

hydrogen storage

“We see that they can trap water and in turn it’s likely that they could trap hydrogen as well. So with all the effort going into understanding the storage of hydrogen underground, it is important to consider what role these defects may have and we think we can apply this approach to do that”, said Sandra Taylor, the lead author of the study and a scientist at the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. This work shows the existence of tiny defects in minerals at the nanometer scale.

A breakthrough for hydrogen storage

One of the interesting parts of the study is how it could provide scientist with further knowledge on how hydrogen fuel, and other explosive gasses, could be safely stored underground or in rocks.

Effective and safe hydrogen storage can be difficult to guarantee. While it can be stored as a compressed gas, it is highly explosive. Moreover, though liquid hydrogen storage is also an option, liquid hydrogen has a low boiling point. This means it must be stored at extremely low temperatures of -252.882 degrees Celsius.

“These new findings provide a surprising and potentially very powerful way to trace evolving ocean chemistry, and the changes in the atmosphere and life by inference, far more directly through what seem to be trapped tiny pockets of seawater”, said Timothy Lyons, a biogeochemistry professor at the University of California, Riverside, and co-author of the paper.

This discovery can help make it easier to use and rely on hydrogen as a clean energy fuel in the future.

Read the full paper here.

Also read Scottish team to explore underground hydrogen storage

green hydrogen

Our work with hydrogen

Universal Kraft works in the implementation of green efficient solutions covering the entire power production chain, and intends to be a part of the change. We have been working with green hydrogen production for several years through our partner company Universal H2.

We believe hydrogen could solve some of the energy transition’s biggest hurdles: storage, clean energy distribution, industry usage and heavy transport. In the new era of renewables, hydrogen and ammonia are a green option to fossil fuels, providing the same functionality on a large scale.

Complementary to direct electrification, hydrogen gives the green industry a chance to contribute beyond the grid, via the generation of green hydrogen as energy storage, greening of gas through methanation of hydrogen and feedstock for high-temperature local industrial processes that are difficult to electrify.

These green power alternatives are fundamental for a sustainable and complete clean energy transition. Universal Kraft has been working on alternative and innovative energy storage solutions for a number of years. 

Discover more about our solutions here.

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