Hydrogen fundamentals

glass molecule of hydrogen

A chemical element

Hydrogen is both the lightest and the most abundant chemical element in the Universe.

A gas

Hydrogen is an odorless and colorless gas that is a component of water and hydrocarbons.

A powerful energy

Hydrogen contains three times more energy than gasoline. Thus, it is considered the fuel of the future.

"I believe that water will one day be used as fuel, that the hydrogen and oxygen it consists of, used alone or together, will provide an inexhaustible source of heat and light, of an intensity that coal is not capable of." Jules VERNE - 1875

Jules VERNE – 1875

A discovery ? No.

The first experiments with hydrogen date back to the 1800s.

In the 19th century, dirigible balloons were powered by hydrogen. 

Rockets are already fueled by hydrogen, which is much more efficient and explosive than kerosene.

ballon

Hydrogen's uses

Unlike fossil fuels (coal, gas, and oil), each taken separately, hydrogen can address all needs, both in transportation and in heating or electricity generation.

Illustration 1

Hydrogen in industry

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Hydrogen in transport

Illustration 3

Hydrogen in buildings

Illustration 4

Hydrogen in power generation

How to produce hydrogen ?

Grey Hydrogen (reforming from fossil fuels)

Blue Hydrogen (reforming from gas with Co2 captation)

Green Hydrogen (electrolysis from renewables)

White hydrogen: tomorrow’s oil ?

Until now, hydrogen had to be produced; it was not conceivable to find it in its natural state. It was therefore considered an “energy carrier” rather than a “resource.” 

This certainty was recently challenged by the discovery, in the summer of 2023, of a hydrogen deposit with tremendous potential in the former mining basins of Lorraine, France. 

Just as our subsoil contains fossil energies like coal, gas, and oil, it is now established that it also contains hydrogen in its natural state, potentially in substantial quantities. The deposit discovered in Lorraine alone could meet global demand for hydrogen. 

Research is also underway elsewhere in the world: in the United States, Australia, Brazil, and Iceland, among other places. The focus is now on estimating the actual resources and developing a method for exploiting this new resource. The question of the profitability of these deposits will then arise. 

If the resources are confirmed and they become economically viable reserves, experts agree that hydrogen could become “tomorrow’s oil.”

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