Decarbonization Technologies through Clean Hydrogen in Fossil Fuel-based Economies
Since decarbonization is one of the major targets of current century, implementation of various technologies enabling this transition play an important role including carbon-free hydrogen and other energy carriers such as ammonia. Currently, industrial hydrogen and ammonia production relies on fossil fuel burning, and as a result, causing signifiacnt greenhouse gas emissions in the world. In this presentation, we aim to explore alternate routes for decarbonizing the fossil fuel economies by introducing cleaner conversion technologies with lower greenhouse gas emissions. This allows for clean fuel production and sustainable consumption of natural gas resources. This also helps in diversifying the higher value products that can be obtained from fossil sources such as natural gas. The integration of renewable energy is also explored to further improve the sustainability on the path to transition to 100% renewables. One of the promising technologies is methane cracking, which is a cleaner conversion way of natural gas. Hydrogen fuel production from methane cracking is a sustainable process compared to the ones currently in practice due to zero greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon black, by-product of the process, is a valuable commodity and can be marketed to other industries. As this is a high-temperature process, using solar energy can further improve its sustainability. The produced clean hydrogen and carbon products can be utilized in fuel cells to generate clean electricity. Moreover, carbon dioxide emissions from the carbon fuel cell can be captured and reacted with hydrogen to produce other low-carbon liquid fuels such as methanol and dimethyl ether. In addition, partial oxidation of methane also represents an alternative for cleaner methane conversion, which can yield methanol fuel. Concentrated solar energy can be used in solar enhanced oil recovery process, which shows the possibilities of integrating solar energy in upstream and downstream oil industry applications. Such studies are of great interest to the fossil fuel-based economies where solar irradiance is commonly high during the year.
Dr. Yusuf Bicer is an associate professor of the Division of Sustainable Development in the College of Science and Engineering at Hamad Bin Khalifa University in Doha, Qatar. His research area focuses on solar energy utilization in various processes, development of renewable-based integrated energy systems, and clean fuel production, including hydrogen and ammonia.
Dr. Yusuf Bicer received his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Ontario Institute of Technology in Oshawa, Canada (2017). He completed his master’s degree in Energy Science and Technology (2014) and his BS in Control Engineering (2012) at Istanbul Technical University, Turkey. His Ph.D. thesis focused on photoelectrochemical-based hydrogen and ammonia production options.