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Improving ammonia borane for hydrogen storage - Chemistry World
Transportation, May 19 2009 (The Hydrogen Journal)
- Scientists at the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, China, have found ways to improve the performance of ammonia borane for hydrogen storage in vehicles, according to an article in chemistry world, the publication of the UK's Royal Society of Chemistry.
Researchers at the National University of Singapore were also involved.
By adding cobalt and nickel catalytic nanoparticles to the structure, it can release hydrogen more cleanly and at lower temperatures.
Ammonia borane is considered the most promising solid material for storing hydrogen, the article says, but it normally needs to be heated to over 100 degrees C to release hydrogen. Unfortunately polymer fuel cells can't operate at this temperature.
The material can also easily become unstable and expand rapidly or turn into foam.
But with the catalytic nanoparticles the material can hold 6 per cent hydrogen by weight at 59 degrees C, with no foaming or expanding. This is the lowest temperature that a material has been able to release hydrogen at so far.
The catalytic nanoparticles are distributed through the structure using a new method called co-precipitation.
However the technology has not yet been developed to work out how to charge the material with hydrogen.