What is Hydrogen (H2)

By Marketing on Aug 10 in Blog.

Barely one day passes by without Hydrogen being mentioned as the future primary energy source. But what is Hydrogen (H2)? And what is, or for what could it possibly be used? Around 75% of the gas on our Earth is H2. Hydrogen can be found in light, water, air, plants, and even animals. However, it is often combined with other chemicals, making it a more familiar scientific combination—H2O, also known as water.

What is Hydrogen?

So what is hydrogen gas? Scientifically shortened as H2, Hydrogen is a colourless, odourless, and tasteless gas lighter than air. Because H2 is lighter than air, it hovers higher than the earth’s atmosphere. Therefore, it cannot be found in nature and must be created by humans. Hydrogen is produced by separating it from other elements and collecting the vapour.

Electrolysis is completed by taking the liquid, in most cases water and separating it from the chemicals found within it. In water, the hydrogen and oxygen molecules split, leaving two bonds of Hydrogen and one bond of oxygen. The hydrogen atoms form a gas which is captured and stored until required. The oxygen atoms are released into the air due to the Hydrogen gas produced, leaving no damaging impact on the environment, making it a suitable option for the future.

Originally, Hydrogen gasses have been used as a critical element for rocket fuel and gas turbines to generate electricity. There are numerous applications in which H2 is applied; therefore, gas detection equipment detecting Hydrogen is frequently used.

The future is fuel?

Fuel is roughly energy forced into a reaction causing an explosion, fire or something like that. This usually means that chemical bonds are broken and combined with oxygen. Where methane gas has been the natural gas of choice over the past decades for heating homes and generating electricity, this energy source is being reduced to the damaging effects on the environment.

Methane was considered a cleaner gas than coal, which it was at the time. However, when burnt carbon dioxide is produced as a waste product, it contributes to climate change. When burnt, hydrogen gas only produces water vapour as a waste product, which is a natural resource. This makes H2 a cleaner source of energy.

Blue Hydrogen vs. Green Hydrogen.

Blue Hydrogen is made from non-renewable energy sources through either the usage of steam or autothermal reforming. The first option, steam methane reformation, is the most commonly used when producing Hydrogen in large quantities. This technique uses a reformer which creates steam at a high temperature and pressure and is then combined with methane and a nickel catalyst to make Hydrogen and carbon monoxide. Autothermal reforming uses the same process as oxygen and carbon dioxide.

Both methods produce carbon as a by-product. Therefore, blue Hydrogen is considered the less green way of producing H2.

Green Hydrogen, on the comprehend, is created using electricity to fuel an electrolyzer that splits hydrogen from water molecules producing oxygen as a by-product.

Hydrogen calibration gas

So, where does that leave us when considering hydrogen calibration gas? When a working environment is created that includes hydrogen, then monitoring this type of gas is highly recommended for personal safety. Calibrate your hydrogen gas detector with SEMA Gases hydrogen (H2) calibration gas according to manufacturers’ guidelines. Don’t hesitate to contact your local distributor for more information on the type of calibration gas needed, concentration, or usage.

Top