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Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Oct 18, 2021

According to Richard Boardman, director for Energy and Environment Science and Technology Programs Office at INL, U.S-based initiatives to explore nuclear hydrogen’s potential have focused mainly on industrial uses because the U.S. already has several existing hydrogen pipelines that feed industrial centers. “We believe that having central hydrogen plants based on electrolysis is going to be a great opportunity for us,” Boardman said as he presented a U.S. perspective during a “Hybrid Event” at the 65th International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference on Sept. 21.

Interesting to see how these are the markets that will likely create the initial hydrogen demand, but I wonder if success there and growth in supply will then lead to the capital build out of other outlets (transportation, home gas replacement, etc.)

Michael Keller's picture
Michael Keller on Oct 25, 2021

The gas plants near the Palo Verde nuclear station are much better suited for efficiently creating hydrogen using high temperature steam for electrolysis with excess/surplus solar energy providing the electricity for steam electrolysis. The hydrogen gas would be used to fire boiler duct burners that are already routinely used to increase steam production to meet grid peaks. Longer range, the hydrogen could be used as supplemental fuel for the gas turbines.

The nearby gas plants are ideally suited to create hydrogen from surplus renewable energy, store the gas and subsequently use it to cover grid peaks that show up in the evening when solar energy is not available. This energy storage approach is vastly superior to using batteries or nuclear power. Palo Verde should operate as a base load power plant which is what the station was designed for.

Looks like just another DOE/INL waste of taxpayer money chasing economically imprudent adventures using nuclear energy in the wrong application.

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