Massive deposit of white hydrogen found in France, may revolutionise clean energytext_fields
Paris: In a recent groundbreaking discovery, two scientists in France have stumbled upon what may be the largest known deposit of white hydrogen, a clean energy resource with the potential to transform the world.
This unexpected find comes as a result of scientists Jacques Pironon and Phillipe De Donato's quest to uncover fossil fuels beneath the northeastern region of France's surface. To their astonishment, they encountered a substantial deposit of white hydrogen, distinguished by its 20% higher concentration at a depth of 1,250 metres, with an estimated range of 6 to 250 million metric tons.
White hydrogen, produced naturally in the Earth's crust, is emerging as a promising clean energy source. Unlike other hydrogen variants, white hydrogen exclusively generates water when combusted, earning its reputation as an exceptionally clean energy resource. It has been aptly named 'white' due to its absence of greenhouse gas emissions during production.
The versatility of white hydrogen extends to applications in various sectors, including fuel cells for vehicles and industrial processes.
The significance of this discovery is further accentuated by the prior belief that such large quantities of white hydrogen could only be synthesised in laboratory settings. Unlike its counterparts, green and gray hydrogen, which are produced via electrolysis, white hydrogen stands out as a potentially more cost-effective alternative to conventional fuels.
Geoffrey Ellis, a geochemist at the US Geological Survey, remarked on this development, stating, "If you had asked me four years ago what I thought about natural hydrogen, I would have told you 'Oh, it doesn't exist. Hydrogen's out there, we know it's around." Geochemist Viacheslav Zgonnik emphasised the potential of white hydrogen to accelerate global efforts to combat climate change, reported CNN.
White hydrogen deposits have also been uncovered in other regions, including Russia, Oman, Mali, and various other locations. Experts estimate that there may be tens of billions of tons of white hydrogen worldwide. While most of these deposits may be small or located in economically unviable areas, even a modest 1% of production could offer 500 million tons of hydrogen over two centuries, according to Ellis.
Start-ups are already exploring ways to commercialise white hydrogen, albeit acknowledging that its development might span over two centuries. Nonetheless, challenges such as regulatory barriers and production costs need to be addressed. Currently, the estimated production cost of white hydrogen stands at approximately $1 per kilogram, significantly undercutting green hydrogen, which costs around $6 per kilogram.
This momentous discovery of vast white hydrogen deposits may hold the key to a more sustainable and cleaner energy future, with the potential to revolutionise industries and drive worldwide efforts to combat climate change.