MIT engineers design a more efficient system for solar-generated hydrogen
The new system could harness 40% of incoming sunlight, making it much more efficient than current solar thermochemical hydrogen systems that capture only 7%.
MIT engineers are on a mission to achieve the US Department of Energy's goal of figuring out an efficient way to produce low-cost green hydrogen fuel by 2030.
In a new study published in Solar Energy, MIT engineers revealed their conceptual design for a new system that creates carbon-free hydrogen using heat from the sun to split water molecules. They say their system should be able to harness 40% of the heat captured from sunlight compared to current solar thermochemical hydrogen systems that capture only 7% of the sun's incoming heat, making the new system more efficient, affordable, and scalable.
Being that this research still very much in the concept stage, sounds like this story falls under the category of "good news if proven true." Still, with hydrogen currently being touted as the best alternative fuel for the aviation and heavy machinery industries, I think this really WILL be good news if true.
(Quick side note on the headline of the TechExplore article linked below – when I first read it, my initial reaction was like, wait, 40% OF THE SUN'S HEAT? Are we talking about the same ball of fire that burns at 5,600C°??? I realize now that's not what the article is saying - but it did make me do a double take. I wonder if the eye-catching misinterpretable vagueness of the headline was deliberate or not... 🤔)