New study may lead to better hydrogen storage for clean energy

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The quest for sustainable and clean energy sources has led scientists to focus on hydrogen as a promising candidate due to its high energy content and clean combustion.

However, storing hydrogen efficiently has been a significant hurdle, limiting its widespread application in energy systems.

A groundbreaking development from Professor Hyunchul Oh and his team at the Department of Chemistry at UNIST offers a new perspective on this challenge.

Their research, published in Nature Chemistry, introduces a novel approach to hydrogen storage using a nanoporous magnesium borohydride (Mg(BH4)2) structure.

This innovative material has demonstrated the ability to store hydrogen at high densities, a notable achievement that could transform future energy systems.

The key to their success lies in the unique properties of the nanoporous complex hydride they developed, which consists of magnesium hydride, solid boron hydride (BH4)2, and magnesium cation (Mg+).

This composition allows the material to store five hydrogen molecules in a three-dimensional arrangement, achieving a level of hydrogen storage density previously unattained.

The material’s hydrogen storage capacity is impressive, with 144 grams of hydrogen per liter of pores, surpassing the density achieved by traditional storage methods, such as compressed hydrogen gas or liquid hydrogen, which stands at 70.8 g/L.

Remarkably, the density of hydrogen molecules within this new material even exceeds that of solid-state hydrogen, highlighting the efficiency and innovation behind this storage method.

Professor Oh’s research marks a significant step forward in the field of hydrogen energy, addressing the critical challenge of storing hydrogen efficiently and economically.

The potential applications of this technology are vast, with particular relevance to large-scale storage needs, such as for public transportation systems, where the demand for clean, efficient energy sources is growing.

This development not only opens new doors for the utilization of hydrogen as a key player in future energy systems but also underscores the importance of innovative materials science in overcoming the challenges associated with renewable energy sources.

The research findings can be found in Nature Chemistry.

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