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Electrolysis Of Water

Check us out at One important use of electrolysis of water is to produce hydrogen. 2 H2O(l) → 2 H2(g) + O2(g); E0 = +1.229 V Hydrogen can be used as a fuel for powering internal combustion engines by combustion or electric motors via hydrogen fuel cells (see Hydrogen vehicle). This has been suggested as one approach to shift economies of the world from the current state of almost complete dependence upon hydrocarbons for energy (See hydrogen economy.) The energy efficiency of water electrolysis varies widely. The efficiency is a measure of what fraction of electrical energy used is actually contained within the hydrogen. Some of the electrical energy is converted to heat, a useless byproduct. Some reports quote efficiencies between 50% and 70%. This efficiency is based on the Lower Heating Value of Hydrogen. The Lower Heating Value of Hydrogen is total thermal energy released when hydrogen is combusted minus the latent heat of vaporisation of the water. This does not represent the total amount of energy within the hydrogen, hence the efficiency is lower than a more strict definition. Other reports quote the theoretical maximum efficiency of electrolysis as being between 80% and 94%. The theoretical maximum considers the total amount of energy absorbed by both the hydrogen and oxygen. These values refer only to the efficiency of converting electrical energy into hydrogen's chemical energy. The energy lost in generating the electricity is not included. For instance, when considering a power plant that converts the heat of nuclear reactions into hydrogen via electrolysis, the total efficiency is more likely to be between 25% and 40%. NREL found that a kilogram of hydrogen (roughly equivalent to a gallon of gasoline) could be produced by wind powered electrolysis for between $5.55 in the near term and $2.27 in the long term. About four percent of hydrogen gas produced worldwide is created by electrolysis, and normally used onsite. Hydrogen is used for the creation of ammonia for fertilizer via the Haber process, and converting heavy petroleum sources to lighter fractions via hydrocracking
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