The Midas Touch: US Navy Researchers Convert Seawater into Fuel

MarineLink.com
Monday, April 14, 2014
Researchers: Photo NRL

Researchers at the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) say they have developed technology to extract carbon dioxide from seawater while simultaneously producing hydrogen, and then converted the gasses into hydrocarbon liquid fuel. NRL engineers consider the breakthrough to be a potentially revolutionary advancement.

Flying a radio-controlled replica of the historic WWII P-51 Mustang red-tail aircraft – of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen – NRL researchers  pictured here (l to r) Dr. Jeffrey Baldwin, Dr. Dennis Hardy, Dr. Heather Willauer, and Dr. David Drab (crouched), successfully demonstrate a novel liquid hydrocarbon fuel to power the aircraft's unmodified two-stroke internal combustion engine. The test provides proof-of-concept for an NRL developed process to extract carbon dioxide (CO2) and produce hydrogen gas (H2) from seawater, subsequently catalytically converting the CO2 and H2 into fuel by a gas-to-liquids process.

Using an innovative and proprietary NRL electrolytic cation exchange module (E-CEM), both dissolved and bound CO2 are removed from seawater at 92 percent efficiency by re-equilibrating carbonate and bicarbonate to CO2 and simultaneously producing H2. The gases are then converted to liquid hydrocarbons by a metal catalyst in a reactor system.

"In close collaboration with the Office of Naval Research P38 Naval Reserve program, NRL has developed a game changing technology for extracting, simultaneously, CO2 and H2 from seawater," said Dr. Heather Willauer, NRL research chemist. "This is the first time technology of this nature has been demonstrated with the potential for transition, from the laboratory, to full-scale commercial implementation."

The predicted cost of jet fuel using these technologies is in the range of $3-$6 per gallon, and with sufficient funding and partnerships, this approach could be commercially viable within the next seven to ten years. Pursuing remote land-based options would be the first step towards a future sea-based solution.
 

 

 

 

Maritime Reporter February 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

RoRo Ship Enters Operation for WWL

Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics welcomes into operation the M/V Thermopylae, the first of its new generation of Post Panamax HERO (High Efficiency RoRo) PCTC vessels.

Containership Becomes Largest to Sail the Thames

The Munkebo Maersk became the largest ship to ever sail up the River Thames as it called at DP World London Gateway, the U.K.’s newest deep-sea port hub. The 399-meter-long,

Rolls-Royce to Power Zhuhai Ferries

Rolls-Royce has been selected to supply waterjets and high speed MTU diesel engines to power two new aluminium catamaran fast ferries for Chinese ferry operator

Technology

Brookings Institution Hosting Panels on LNG Marine Fuel

The Brookings Institution, a Washington D.C.-based think tank, will host a two-panel discussion on the use of LNG as a marine fuel on Tuesday, March 3, the organization announced today.

Okeanus to Represent MacArtney Group in Brazil

Underwater technology provider MacArtney Group has signed an agreement with Okeanus Ltda. to be the group's official representative in the Brazilian market, MacArtney Group announced today.

HydroComp Releases New NavCad Premium Edition

HydroComp is releasing a major upgrade for its NavCad software tool, the company announced today.   NavCad has been used for resistance and propulsion prediction for nearly three decades,

Navy

US Keen in Maritime Cooperation with India

The US is keen in exploring great opportunities for co-operation on maritime issues with India, Admiral Jonathan Greenert, Chief of Naval Operations told members

U.N. Calls for Maritime Support to Libya

According to United Nations, Libyan authorities need an international maritime force to help as they are unable to halt the illicit trade in oil or the flow of weapons in and out of the country,

Ghana and US Maritime Forces Collaborate

The Ghana Armed Forces and the United States Maritime Forces have completed a joint maritime operation, the Africa Maritime Law Enforcement Partnership (AMLEP),

Fuels & Lubes

RoRo Ship Enters Operation for WWL

Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics welcomes into operation the M/V Thermopylae, the first of its new generation of Post Panamax HERO (High Efficiency RoRo) PCTC vessels.

Asia: LPG Shipping and LNG Pricing

While declining Asian LNG prices have reduced margins on the long-distance LNG trade, causing spot-charter rates for LNG vessels to fall, LPG shipping earnings

GTT Receives Order for LNG Bunker Barge

Gaztransport & Technigaz (GTT), a designer of membrane containment systems for the maritime transportation and storage of LNG liquefied natural gas (LNG), announced that its U.

Marine Power

Britain Should Appoint Ambassador to the Arctic

The House of Lords Arctic Committee urged that UK should follow the example set by France, Singapore and Japan and appoint an Ambassador for the Arctic.   The

U.N. Calls for Maritime Support to Libya

According to United Nations, Libyan authorities need an international maritime force to help as they are unable to halt the illicit trade in oil or the flow of weapons in and out of the country,

Rolls-Royce to Power Zhuhai Ferries

Rolls-Royce has been selected to supply waterjets and high speed MTU diesel engines to power two new aluminium catamaran fast ferries for Chinese ferry operator

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Navigation Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.3103 sec (3 req/sec)