Dehydrogenation of NaAlH 4 can be greatly facilitated by activated carbon catalysts. The catalytic function can be further enhanced by decorating the carbon with Co, Ni, or Cu nanoparticles. The decomposition temperature was lowered by as much as 100 °C using a 3 wt.% Co or Ni-decorated activated carbon, comparable to a Ti-based catalyst, which were the most effective among the metals tested. The catalytic effect is likely due to a combination of hydrogen spillover effect, high contact area between carbon and the hydride, and confinement of the hydride as nano-sized domains in the pores of the carbon matrix. The catalysts were also effective in facilitating rehydrogenation of NaAlH 4 under moderate pressure (75.8 bar H 2) and low temperature (120 °C), when no rehydrogenation would occur without the catalyst. The fact that this new catalyst system is not specific to any hydride offers many potential applications.
- Hydrogen storage
- Sodium aluminum hydride
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Fuel Technology
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology