With declining global crude oil supplies, increasing political instability in the regions with large oil reserves, more stringent emission regulations and the threat of global warming, hydrogen has been proclaimed as the future transportation fuel (Balat, 2008). The strategic development of hydrogen technology is extremely important in the pursuit of a low-emission, environmental friendly, cleaner and sustainable energy system in which most governments are pursuing (4013). Hydrogen as a future alternative transportation fuel has many advantages. One is that hydrogen can be produced from a wide variety of sources such as biomass-based production, electrolysis of water, coal gasification, etc. Another key advantage is the special properties of hydrogen. Hydrogen has a rapid burning speed, a high effective octane number, and no toxicity or ozone-forming potential. Also, the only combustion byproduct of hydrogen is water and a minor amount of nitrogen oxide. Unfortunately, its major downfall is the cumbersome and heavy on-board storage tanks required for gasoline-comparable driving range. Given the advantages associated with hydrogen technology, many believe a hydrogen economy will eventually rise, replacing the vast majority of petroleum fuels currently in use.— Blake Kos
Balat, M., 2008. Potential importance of hydrogen as a future solution to environmental and transportation problems. International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 33, 4013-4029.
Mustafa Balat at the University of Mahallasi in Turkey has analyzed the potential importance of hydrogen as a future solution to replacing petroleum-based fuels and he indicates in his article that hydrogen will be viable solution in the long term as the costs related to hydrogen technology diminish.
Hydrogen, a colorless, odorless, tasteless and non-toxic gas, is the most abundant element in the universe. The production of hydrogen can be accomplished from numerous sources through a range of processes. It is believed that eventually, hydrogen will replace most petroleum-based products and give rise to the “hydrogen economy”. In order for that to occur, many obstacles will need to be addressed. These obstacles include a cost efficient delivery system, a universal and ubiquitous hydrogen distribution infrastructure, more cost effective hydrogen production and better on-board storage capabilities. Once these drawbacks are overcome, hydrogen will be the answer to combating socially and politically unstable issues like global warming, diminishing oil supplies, stricter emission standards and increases in health problems associated with air pollution in industrialized and developing nations around the world.