Sound waves to optimize electrolysis

Scholars from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) have discovered that sound waves can produce 14 times more hydrogen during electrolysis, while preventing bubbles from forming on the electrodes.

“Good vibrations” is how RMIT describes the action of these sound waves. The basic idea is to stimulate the water molecules to produce more hydrogen by means of high-frequency vibrations. And these vibrations have another advantage: they prevent the formation of oxygen and hydrogen bubbles on the electrodes, which reduces their performance. The result is that with the same voltage, this process can release 14 times more hydrogen.

And where the process becomes really promising is that it allows the use of lower cost electrodes. Instead of using precious materials like platinum or iridium, they could use silver. RMIT also says that its technology can potentially improve the conversion efficiency leading to a net-positive energy saving of 27%. 

However, the challenge is to integrate the acoustic platform within the electrolysers. This is why the researchers would like to get closer to manufacturers. 

Article written by Laurent Meillaud and translated by Logan King 

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