Hydrogen Fuel From Salt Water

The 'hydrogen economy' requires a lot of things, but first is an easy and cheap supply of hydrogen. A Penn State professor thinks he has found a way to access that supply. 

What's the Latest Development?


Director of Penn State's Hydrogen to Energy Center, professor Ben Logan thinks he has found a way to access a cheap and plentiful supply of hydrogen which could power tomorrow's economy. Using a process called electrodialysis, Logan combines some ordinary bacteria with water molecules to separate out the hydrogen. Typically, conventional electrodialysis requires too much energy to separate water's constituent elements, oxygen and hydrogen, but Logan combined a method from microbial fuel cell research. 

What's the Big Idea?

A cheaper, less energy-intensive way to harvest hydrogen must be found before we can expect our cars to be powered by this most fundamental of elements. But this isn't stopping companies from researching the possibility of hydrogen fuel cells. "Some car companies already make hydrogen-powered models. The state of Hawaii is already experimenting with hydrogen fuel systems. Producing cheaper, abundant hydrogen—especially from sewer water and seawater—is a big step in that direction."

Car culture and suburbs grow right-wing populism, claims study

New research links urban planning and political polarization.

Pixabay
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Canadian researchers find that excessive reliance on cars changes political views.
  • Decades of car-centric urban planning normalized unsustainable lifestyles.
  • People who prefer personal comfort elect politicians who represent such views.
Keep reading Show less

How to split the USA into two countries: Red and Blue

Progressive America would be half as big, but twice as populated as its conservative twin.

Image: Dicken Schrader
Strange Maps
  • America's two political tribes have consolidated into 'red' and 'blue' nations, with seemingly irreconcilable differences.
  • Perhaps the best way to stop the infighting is to go for a divorce and give the two nations a country each
  • Based on the UN's partition plan for Israel/Palestine, this proposal provides territorial contiguity and sea access to both 'red' and 'blue' America
Keep reading Show less

NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller on ​the multiple dimensions of space and human sexuality

Science and the squishiness of the human mind. The joys of wearing whatever the hell you want, and so much more.

Flickr / 13winds
Think Again Podcasts
  • Why can't we have a human-sized cat tree?
  • What would happen if you got a spoonful of a neutron star?
  • Why do we insist on dividing our wonderfully complex selves into boring little boxes
Keep reading Show less