For utilisation routes where hydrogen acts as intermediate, research and development needs are concentrated mainly in the area of processes and systems for further material conversion of hydrogen to other energy carriers or basic chemicals. In particular, this includes H2-to-methane- and H2-to-liquids processes that form the object of work in focus area 4.
The conversion of hydrogen to methane, i.e. synthetic natural gas, is an alternative to the direct utilisation of hydrogen because transport and storage infrastructure already exists for natural gas. Here, hydrogen and carbon monoxide (or carbon dioxide) react to form methane and steam. However, efficiency losses in this conversion process and the matter of providing a sustainable carbon source must be taken into consideration. In Lower Saxony biomass and/or biogas are being considered.
The further processing of hydrogen to synthetic liquid fuels is particularly useful in applications that require a high energy density. With a staggered succession of catalytic processes, for example, synthetic kerosene can be produced from hydrogen and CO2.
The following partners form part of the focus area 4:
Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg – Chemistry Department (IfC)
Professor Dr. Michael Wark
Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications, Heinrich Hertz Institute, Goslar (HHI)
Professor Dr. Wolfgang Schade
Clausthal University of Technology– Clausthal Institute of Environmental Technologies (CUTEC)
Dr.-Ing. Andreas Lindermeir
Clausthal University of Technology – Research Centre for Energy Storage Technologies (EST)
Dr. Thomas Gimpel,
Dr. Martin Söftje
Clausthal University of Technology – Institute of Chemical and Electrochemical Process Engineering (ICVT)
Professor Dr.-Ing. Thomas Turek,
Professor Dr.-Ing. Gregor D. Wehinger