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A High-Performance Reactor for Producing High-Purity Hydrogen from Coal

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University of Florida researchers have developed a unique high-porositymagnetically stabilized iron/silica structure that can be used to produce high-purity hydrogen at high temperatures with significant throughput using an established iron-based chemical looping process. By applying an external magnetic field to stabilize fluidized iron/silica particles the researchers discovered that magnetization results in natural spaces between the iron particles and can exploit sintering. These spaces create larger voids hence surface area with which the gas can maintain contact during the necessary chemical reactions at high temperatures. These high porosity very well controlled sintered structures are prepared in such a way that they maintain their shape during the hydrogen production looping processes at high temperatures. The system which boasts improved hydrogen output is compatible with standard methods for carbon capture and storage. This same reactor technology can also be used with carbon-neutral solar-based hydrogen production. Application: A device that inexpensively isolates clean hydrogen gas for energy from abundant water resources using coal-based syngas as an input.


1) Magnetic treatment enhances iron’s porosity boosting the reactor’s hydrogen output rate up to 90 percent 2) Aids the transition from a hydrocarbon economy to a hydrogen economy safeguarding the environment from damaging pollutants 3) Utilizes abundant raw components (e.g. iron water and coal) ensuring a stable supply of hydrogen is available to meet ever-increasing energy demands

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