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Thread: Nitrogen Fuel Cell?

  1. #1 Nitrogen Fuel Cell? 
    Forum Masters Degree SuperNatendo's Avatar
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    Yes, there is alot more hydrogen in the universe than there is nitrogen, our current problem on this planet however is that hydrogen tends to bond with nearly everything and the process of seperating hydrogen out of say water requires more electricity than a hydrogen fuel cell can produce. But, our air is FULL of pure molecular nitrogen (a.k.a. "Dynitrogen")!

    So why not study nitrogen fuel cells as opposed to hydrogen? I am sure there is a way to release electrons just as hydrogen does in fuel cells in some sort of a catalyst.

    That way, as long as the catalyst doesn't become contaminated from other elements in the air, finding the fuel is not an issue...


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  3. #2 But Hydrogen is so fun! 
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    Looks fun to make, at least. Check out this link on how to do it for $15 at home!

    http://www.howvids.com/Home-and-Gard..._Generator.ad2


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  4. #3  
    Forum Masters Degree SuperNatendo's Avatar
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    Hydrogen gleaned using the process of electrolysis of water requires electricity, you cannot produce the same amount of electricity required to separate the hydrogen from the water in the first place by only using the hydrogen you separated. You need additional energy. I have already separated hydrogen from water using this method before,

    If you can make a NITROGEN fuel cell, the nitrogen is already separated in the very air we breathe. No electrolysis required.
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  5. #4  
    Forum Isotope Bunbury's Avatar
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    Molecular nitrogen is extremely stable and unreactive. If you do somehow manage to react it with oxygen the products are oxides of nitrogen which are constituents of smog. So, keep thinking, but I think this idea might be a dead end.
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  6. #5  
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    All of the products of oxidizing N2 are very toxic. Nitric acid is also formed in the presence of water. Furthermore, there is a much higher activation barrier involved in burning nitrogen than hydrogen and much less heat is produced per liter.
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  7. #6  
    Forum Ph.D. Cat1981(England)'s Avatar
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    There was an article in this weeks New Scientist about using nitrogen as rocket fuel. Article preview link. Apparently researchers in Canada have made a computer simulated stable eight atom nitrogen chain formed inside a carbon nanotube. Although they haven't yet been able to produce one physically, people are looking into such things.
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