Picture in the bakground
Hydrogen as an energy carrier
For an environmentally friendly hydrogen technology, it is essential to produce “green” hydrogen by converting water with the help of wind and solar power. Electrolyzers a with polymer electrolyte membrane tolerate large current fluctuations and are ideally suited for this purpose. Researchers at Jülich are working on reducing material costs and further extending the service life.
The EU wants to be climate neutral by 2050. To achieve this goal, CO2 emissions are to be reduced by 55 per cent compared to 1990 by 2030. At the same time, it is vital to secure the electricity supply and keep industry competitive. Jülich scientists have been modelling scenarios to find out how these goals can be achieved. They make recommendations for a future energy system based on renewable energies and develop technologies for it.
Hydrogen plays a key role: it is intended to replace fossil fuels, store energy, enable mobility and serve as a basic material for the chemical industry, both efficiently and cost-effectively. It is also to be “green”, that is, produced with the help of renewable energies. Jülich research on this topic is diverse: from material development for electrolysis plants and fuel cells or solar modules to the analysis of electrochemical processes and the transport, storage and use of hydrogen.
The energy system is one of the most important human influences on the climate and the atmosphere, both regionally and globally. Jülich scientists investigate the exact effects of these influences by studying physical and chemical processes in the atmosphere. They use experimental findings and computer simulations to advance existing climate models, act as experts and advise politicians and the public on necessary measures.
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research has initiated the lead project H2-Giga to advance the series production of electrolysis plants. These plants are needed to meet Germany’s future demand for sustainably produced hydrogen. Forschungszentrum Jülich has received funding totalling €96 million for its contributions to the project.
On the surface of a catalytically active model electrode, an atomically thin layer doubles the amount of water split in an electrolysis plant. This also doubles the amount of hydrogen produced, without increasing the energy requirement, as reported by researchers from Jülich, Aachen, Stanford and Berkeley.
The H2 Atlas-Africa project, coordinated by Jülich scientist Dr. Solomon Agbo, presents encouraging interim results: chances are good that the 15 states of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS will establish themselves as producers and exporters of sustainably produced hydrogen in the long run.
Researchers at Jülich have unlocked the chemical processes that produce most of the formic acid present in the atmosphere. Thanks to this knowledge, it will be possible to further refine atmospheric and climate models.
A nanostructured transparent material and a new cell design pave the way for the production of silicon solar cells with an efficiency of more than 26 per cent.
Jülich systems researchers analyzed what is needed for Germany to achieve its declared goal of becoming greenhouse gas neutral by 2045. The study shows that immediate measures must be taken in all sectors – in energy, transport, buildings, industry and services.
Researchers from Jülich, Cologne and Norway have successfully harnessed artificial intelligence to find out what causes the everyday frequency deviations in various electricity grids. Such fluctuations are associated with risks for operators and costs for consumers.
Scientists from the Helmholtz Institute Münster, a branch of Forschungszentrum Jülich, showed in a study that the full potential of the conventional lithium-ion battery has not yet been tapped.
images: Forschungszentrum Jülich/Sascha Kreklau, Forschungszentrum Jülich/Ralf- Uwe-Limbach