High Pressure Hydrogen Generation from Formic Acid

Céline Fellay ,  Paul J. Dyson ,  Gabor Laurenczy 

Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), Lausanne CH-1015, Switzerland


The generalisation of the use of hydrogen as a fuel, although very promising, is currently limited mainly because of storage problems.[1] We have developed a continuous hydrogen generation process under pressure using formic acid as hydrogen storage material.[2] The formic acid is decomposed into H2 and CO2 in aqueous solution using a homogeneous transition metal catalyst.

HCOOH → H2 + CO2

The hydrogen production exhibits very good robustness and efficient hydrogen generation from formic acid. Formic acid has previously been proposed as hydrogen storage material, although up to now applications were limited by rather extreme reaction conditions, catalyst regeneration requirements, and lack of selectivity. These limitations have been overcome by the proposed process. 

We are grateful to Swiss National Science Foundation and COST D30 (WG001) for financial support.

1. L. Schlapbach, A. Züttel, Nature, 414, 353 (2001).

2. C. Fellay, P. J. Dyson, G. Laurenczy, European patent application filed (2006).

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Presentation: Poster at COST D30 Final Evaluation Meeting, by Céline Fellay
See On-line Journal of COST D30 Final Evaluation Meeting

Submitted: 2007-10-22 18:02
Revised:   2009-06-07 00:44
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