Hydrogen is a clear, odourless and colourless gas. It is the most simple and abundant element in the world and can be used as a pure gas (H2) or combined with numerous other substances to form compounds- many of which we heavily rely on today.
Hydrogen can be produced by transporting electricity through water and breaking the water into oxygen and hydrogen compounds, but it can also be created directly from biomass or fossil fuels. Hydrogen can also be produced by steam reforming or via electrolysis with the help of nuclear energy.
There are so many processes and labels for hydrogen, so it can be confusing what they refer to. Hydrogen labelled by colour refers to the hydrogen production methods used. In this blog post, we will focus on blue and green hydrogen as these are the most renowned methods of producing hydrogen. However, hearing of grey, brown, yellow, turquoise, or even pink hydrogen is not uncommon.
Blue hydrogen is produced from natural gasses via steam methane reforming (SMR). During the steam methane reforming process, natural gas and very hot steam are mixed with a catalyst. As a result of this mixing, hydrogen and carbon dioxide are formed. To have pure hydrogen, the CO2 is removed and stored somewhere else.
If hydrogen is produced with natural gas and the process incorporates carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS), it can be considered low-carbon hydrogen.
The benefits of using blue hydrogen include:
- Saves renewable energy: Because blue hydrogen is not produced with renewable energy, it reduces the amount of renewable energy that needs to be produced, or it can be saved for a more beneficial purpose.
- Uses fewer scarce resources: As renewable energy production requires more land, it takes up more space. However, blue hydrogen production does not require such vast amounts of land.
- Cost-effective: For the time being, green hydrogen is more expensive than blue, thus making blue hydrogen more cost-effective.
Green hydrogen is produced by electrolysis by using a renewable energy source, such as water or wind, as the electrical current. As carbon dioxide is not emitted into the atmosphere during this process, it is the most efficient and clean energy available.
There are numerous benefits to using green hydrogen and we will list some of them below:
- 100% sustainable: As polluting gasses are not released into the atmosphere due to green hydrogen production, this makes it 100% sustainable.
- Storable: Hydrogen can be stored easily. This makes it suitable to be used in various amounts and at different times instead of as soon as it is produced.
- Versatile: Green hydrogen can be used for a variety of purposes as it can be transformed into electricity or synthetic gas.
International Gas Deretectors and our Gas Detection solutions
When working with hydrogen, oxygen and other gases it is important to maintain the safety of staff, machinery and the environment which these gasses are present in. At International Gas Detectors Ltd, we provide a range of gas detectors for hydrogen, oxygen and more.
At IGD, we can provide safe area, ATEX rated and sampling gas detection, perfect for both blue and green hydrogen. Each of these H2 gas detectors can feature our revolutionary new MK8 flammable gas sensor (calibrated to Hydrogen). This gas sensor offers a huge level of stability and poison resistance. Thus, not only offering a longer lifetime but also ensuring you have an accurate and reliable sensor for the safety of your team.
For reliable, lightweight H2 portable gas detection, IGD can offer the SGT-P from Senko. The SGT-P offers an industry leading lifetime of 3-5 years and features a user-friendly interface. Thus, minimizing training requirements and ensuring your gas detector will last with almost no additional costs. This making the SGT-P H2 the ideal portable solution for Hydrogen detection.
All of this is available on our unique, revolutionary 2-Wire addressable technology. Offering 70% cost savings upon installation and 80% more capability per detector. Our 2-Wire addressable systems are all IOT capable, for remote alarms and system control straight from your phone, tablet, or computer.
If you would like more information on our gas detection solutions, please do not hesitate to contact us today.