Pink hydrogen, also known as pink Hâ‚‚, is a type of hydrogen that falls within the color spectrum. It is created by extracting steam from nuclear power plants and running it through an electrolyzer, which yields pure hydrogen and oxygen. Pink, purple, or red hydrogen, regardless of its color, is derived from the same production method. Importantly, this process generates minimal greenhouse gas emissions, making the production of pink/purple/red hydrogen environmentally sustainable.
How Pink Hygrogen is Produced?
Electrolysis is a widely used process for the production of hydrogen around the world. The hydrogen of different colors depends on the process of a particular hydrogen generation. Pink hydrogen is produced through electrolysis, but the supply of electricity is through nuclear power plants. The waste energy generated from heat is utilized by the nuclear power plants solving the problems of economics and efficiency. Nuclear power plants can produce hydrogen in the following ways:
- Cold electrolysis
- Low and high temperature steam electrolysis
- High temperature thermochemical production
In addition to pink hydrogen, red hydrogen also utilizes the immense power of nuclear energy to perform high-temperature catalytic splitting of water. Another exciting variation, purple hydrogen combines nuclear power and heat to carry out a fascinating process known as thermochemical electrolysis.
The possibilities and potential of these innovative methods are truly remarkable. Instead of relying on hydrocarbon reforming, the surplus energy from nuclear reactors can be harnessed to produce vast quantities of high-quality electrolytic-grade hydrogen.
Also Read: What is Green Hydrogen?
Challenges of Pink Hydrogen
From an energy trilemma perspective, this hydrogen has the following drawbacks.
1. Low Efficiency
The production of pink hydrogen using conventional electrolysis technology has an overall thermal efficiency of around 25%. This low efficiency stems from the fact that the electrolysis process is typically about 75% efficient, while the production of electricity is typically only around 30% efficient.
2. High Price
In order to enhance the economic competitiveness of pink hydrogen produced through high-temperature steam electrolysis, it is imperative to implement a carbon tax of $360/tonne CO2e, thereby compensating for its current high price and making it on par with grey hydrogen.
There are doubts about the sustainability of pink hydrogen. This type of hydrogen is generated through nuclear facilities, so it’s crucial to handle radioactive waste properly in order to avoid environmental contamination and potential risks to human health.
In the future, advanced tools will help us assess the true potential of the hydrogen economy. However, there are still many challenges to overcome in the hydrogen value chains. Currently, we are seeing the emergence of new hydrogen production technologies and decreasing investment costs. This emphasizes the need for decision-making tools to determine the most efficient and cost-effective hydrogen production, storage, transportation, and distribution systems. These tools should consider factors such as cost, safety, and environmental impact.
Must Read: What is Blue Hydrogen?