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New UK joint venture for lightweight, modular ammonia crackers

Reaction Engines, IP Group, and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) launched a new joint venture this week at COP26 in Glasgow. The group will design and commercialise lightweight, modular ammonia cracking reactors to enable the use of ammonia in hard-to-decarbonise sectors, particularly aviation, shipping and off-grid power generation applications. The design will feature Reaction Engines’ heat exchanger technology developed for its SABRE™ air-breathing rocket engine. In this setup, exhaust heat is utilised to partially crack ammonia back into a fuel blend that "mimics" jet fuel. STFC will lead development of the cracking catalyst, with funding to be provided by IP Group.

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Starfire Energy’s Prometheus ammonia cracking technology

The lowest cost way to use ammonia as a fuel is as an intact NH3 molecule. However, its slow flame speed can cause challenges managing flame stability, ammonia slip, and nitrogen oxide formation. Some fuel cells also require hydrogen, rather than ammonia. Ammonia cracking can solve these problems by providing either a NH3 + H2 + N2 blend or, with appropriate processing, pure hydrogen. Starfire Energy’s Prometheus cracking technology is a unique approach that uses an oxide catalyst bonded to a metal foil substrate. It provides excellent opportunities to power the cracking reaction with both waste combustion heat or purpose-generated…

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The Future of Ammonia Cracking

The global energy sector stands before a massive transformation, going from the present state mainly driven by fossil-based resources and changing into a green future where renewable power will take over as the key energy source. In this transformation new market arises and new technologies are needed. One example is the ammonia cracking technology which only has limited use today. One key issue to solve in the future is the mismatch between where renewable power is available and where energy is needed. Today electrolysis is being commercialized in great scale transforming renewable power into hydrogen. As hydrogen is very complicated…

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Photocatalytic Decomposition of Ammonia

In its recently released 6th assessment report, the International Panel on Climate Change  unequivocally stated that human activity is the primary driver of observed global warming effects over the  past 150 years. Broad alignment with this assertion by the public and private sectors has been the driving  force behind decarbonization efforts and various net-zero emissions goals. To date, decarbonization has  focused on increasing renewable power capacity and electrification of mobility with few solutions provided  for “hard-to-abate” sectors (transport, shipping, aviation, and heavy industry (cement, steel, and chemicals))  that are reliant on inexpensive petrochemicals as fuels / feedstocks and contribute nearly…

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Catalytic Membrane Reactor for H2-Production from Ammonia

The ability to store massive amounts of dispatchable energy is key for the development of reliable and flexible energy systems, particularly under the new energy concept where large renewable power plants increasingly farther from end users will operate together with distributed wind and solar power plants. Massive energy storage enables a wide set of features ranging from improved supply and demand adjustment, increased system reliability and decarbonization of energy intensive sectors including heating services, industry, and transport. Within this framework, green hydrogen outstands as a key solution to unleash the full potential of renewable energy sources to decarbonize energy applications…

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Ammonia-based Clean Energy System with Ultra-High Energy Density

Amogy builds a novel carbon-free high energy density system using ammonia (NH3) as a fuel, with the targeted system-level energy densities of >1,000 Wh/kg (gravimetric) and >750 Wh/L (volumetric), respectively.  The solution consists of ammonia storage, a miniaturized fuel processor (or called reformer/reactor) and a fuel cell. With highly efficient catalysts operating at significantly low temperature and heat-integrated hybrid reactor, the innovative energy system is optimized for the mobility applications requiring sustainable and dynamic operations. This new energy system could enable the electrification of heavy ground/sea/air transportations, where current existing and emerging technologies, e.g., Li-ion battery or gaseous hydrogen (H2),…

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Next Generation Technology Integration Platform for Low- and Zero-Carbon Ammonia Production and Utilization

RTI International and its partners are developing a Technology Integration Platform (TIP) to demonstrate next-generation technologies for ammonia (NH3) production and utilization in a modular testbed as part of U.S. Department of Energy ARPA-E’s REFUEL+IT program. The objective of this effort will be to demonstrate the use of NH3 for long duration energy storage, as a fuel, and a hydrogen (H2) carrier.  The TIP, which will be housed at the University of Minnesota West Central Research and Outreach Center’s operational hybrid wind and solar test site, will integrate several breakthrough technologies developed in the REFUEL program to demonstrate an advanced…

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New materials for cracking catalysts

Among the many challenges for cracking researchers is their choice of material to build their catalysts from. There is hope that cheaper, more readily-available materials will replace the Ruthenium-based catalysts that have dominated the field up to this point. This week two new pieces of research suggest a way forwards using alkali metal-based materials: Lithium and Calcium.

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Production and utilization of green ammonia: KIER’s current status and future plans

Green ammonia, a carbon-free chemical, has been drawing much attention as a hydrogen carrier and carbon-neutral fuel for trading green hydrogen and building a carbon-neutral society, respectively, because it has higher volumetric hydrogen content and energy density than liquid hydrogen. And the infrastructure for storing and transporting ammonia is already in place. To implement green ammonia into the current energy systems, technologies on low-cost green ammonia production, decomposition, and utilization are essential. This presentation will show the KIER’s current status and perspective on the development of low-cost green ammonia production and utilization.