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2023 | Book

Hydrogen in Automotive Engineering

Production, Storage, Application

Authors: Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner

Publisher: Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden


About this book

This book provides a general overview of the various aspects of the properties, production, storage and application of hydrogen. Emphasis is placed on the thermodynamics of hydrogen as well as its application in vehicle technology and energy engineering. With reference to research projects at the Graz University of Technology and HyCentA, Hydrogen Center Austria, the current state of the art is presented in a well-founded manner. The sections on electrolysis for the production of hydrogen from green electricity and on fuel cells for the generation of electricity for electric drives in particular have been updated and supplemented.

Table of Contents

1. Energy Revolution and Hydrogen Economy
The economic, ecological, social and health consequences of climate change and environmental pollution pose a serious threat to our quality of life. A sustainable solution is offered by the energy revolution and the hydrogen economy with the complete decarburization of our energy system by the total replacement of the currently predominant fossil fuels with green electricity and green hydrogen, see Fig. 1.1.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
2. Historical Notes
Hydrogen was already produced and described by the Swiss nature researcher Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim, known as Paracelsus (1493–1541), from the reaction of metals and acid, but he did not recognize hydrogen as an individual element. The term “gas” derives from the term “chaos” used by Paracelsus for the foaming products of his experiments.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
3. Fundamentals
Hydrogen (H, hydrogenium = water former) is the smallest and simplest atom, it consists of only one proton as nucleus, which is orbited by one electron.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
4. Production
Since hydrogen does not occur naturally in its pure form, it must be produced by the use of energy. Various processes are applied for this purpose, using different primary energy sources and hydrogen compounds, with efficiency and carbon dioxide emissions being important evaluation criteria. This section provides an overview of the main production processes, and electrolytic water splitting is discussed in detail.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
5. Storage and Transport
Due to the low density of hydrogen, storage and transport with sufficient energy density present technical and economic challenges [206, 210, 211, 379]. The following methods are common:
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
6. Fuel Cells
The functional principle of the fuel cell was discovered by Christian Friedrich Schönbein in 1838. In the following year, the physicist and lawyer Sir William Robert Grove was able to develop the first fuel cell on this basis. However, the fuel cell was unable to compete with the mechanically driven dynamo machines developed at the same time to generate electricity. Its application remained limited to special fields, for example, it proved its suitability as an energy converter in space travel. Recently, intensive work has again been carried out on the further development of the fuel cell, which is regarded as a future energy converter that can be operated emission-free and with high efficiency independently of fossil fuels. Although the fuel cell was invented many years before the internal combustion engine, its technical optimization is still in its early stages.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
7. Internal Combustion Engines
The principle of the hydrogen internal combustion engine is based on a conventional internal combustion engine (mostly spark ignited and explained in the following descriptions), which can be adapted for exclusive or bivalent operation with hydrogen and operated with hydrogen or hydrogen-rich gases as fuel by changing the mixture formation system, combustion process etc. In addition to the necessary changes to the engine control system, it must of course be ensured that all materials and components that come into contact with hydrogen are suitable.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
8. Further Applications
The applications of hydrogen in energy technology and automotive engineering discussed so far are still developing and currently account for only a few percent of global use. About half of the hydrogen currently used in industry is employed in the Haber-Bosch process to produce ammonia, which is used as a feedstock for the production of nitrogen fertilizer. Another quarter of hydrogen is used in refinery processes to process petroleum, particularly for hydrofining and hydrocracking. Hydrogen and carbon monoxide (synthesis gas) also form the raw materials for the production of liquid fuels from gas, biomass or coal using the Fischer-Tropsch process and for the production of methanol. Furthermore, hydrogen is used in the semiconductor industry, analytical chemistry, food chemistry, water treatment and metallurgy. Finally, hydrogen plays an important role in metabolic processes. Table 8.1 provides an overview of these further applications of hydrogen.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
9. Materials, Law and Safety
For the sake of completeness, a brief overview of safety-relevant aspects of hydrogen and its technical applications follows. The safe handling of hydrogen requires knowledge of its properties and the observance of the resulting safety measures. This ranges from the correct choice of materials to compliance with explosion protection guidelines. In recent years, increasing efforts have been made to formulate corresponding internationally valid regulations.
Manfred Klell, Helmut Eichlseder, Alexander Trattner
Hydrogen in Automotive Engineering
Manfred Klell
Helmut Eichlseder
Alexander Trattner
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