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Hydrogen-based thermal power produced using aluminum scrap

Boston-based startup Found Energy announced that it has successfully produced 20 kW of continuous, hydrogen-based thermal power in an experimental reactor using 1 kilogram of low-grade aluminum scrap such as foil as a fuel source.

According to the company, the scrap is treated with a proprietary catalyst that causes it to liberate hydrogen particles contained in a water bath, which can either be burned for thermal energy or stored in a fuel cell.

Once the reaction is over and the heat and hydrogen dissipate, aluminum hydroxide is left behind. Aluminum hydroxide is a chemical precursor to alumina that primary smelters use to make pure aluminum metal.

The reactor, capable of producing electricity in the kilowatt range, is only the company’s initial offering. The plan in the third quarter is to begin testing a model capable of producing electricity in the megawatt range. 

Found Energy hopes to market the low-emission power source to heavy industrial energy consumers such as aluminum smelters, long-haul trucking and ocean-going freighters, all fueled by oil-based products with more extensive carbon footprints.

The firm also expects ammonia producers for fertilizers – who typically use hydrogen extracted via steam methane reforming – to look into the new technology as it is an alternative solution capable of delivering hydrogen in a safer manner and with higher volumetric energy density.

With files from Argus Media.

Source: MINING.COM – Read More