Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe and has great properties when reacting with oxygen for use as a fuel. Yet here on Earth, its production is prohibitively expensive, its storage without wastage is almost impossible because its molecules are so small no know substance or material can store it safely without leaks. Not to mention safety, as it is highly explosive.

Given its energy density, the above mentioned problems and other inherent problems I did not mention with using hydrogen as a fuel for aircraft, is it possible to come up with a compound or two compounds that can be safely stored in two tanks and have an efficient energy to weight ratio, such that when they react by mixture or process, they produce enough hydrogen to power airliners at the same rate or much more efficiently than with regular fuel?

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    $\begingroup$ The real question is almost never "is such-and-such reaction possible", but "where are the money". $\endgroup$ Feb 27 '20 at 15:35
  • $\begingroup$ Such compounds certainly exist but they are 1- expensive to make relative to hydrogen 2 - heavy, you don't get much hydrogen per kg of compound $\endgroup$
    – Waylander
    Feb 27 '20 at 15:48
  • $\begingroup$ Apparently Palladium absorbs easily Hydrogen. But If you succeed in making a compound with 1 atom Palladium + 2 atom Hydrogen, the obtained product would be made of 98% Palladium + 2% Hydrogen in weight. The fuel is only 2% of the mass. $\endgroup$
    – Maurice
    Feb 27 '20 at 16:30
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    $\begingroup$ However you put this question, it's either blatant, or too broad, or opinion based. Reversible storage of hydrogen in compounds is like whole branch of chemistry for a long time, and so what? You're not gonna see airliners running like that for a long time, maybe never. $\endgroup$
    – Mithoron
    Feb 27 '20 at 18:08

Chemical hydrogen storage materials like hydrazine, borohydrides etc. are considered potential candidates for this purpose (1).

Nanoparticles, nanoalloys & functionalized nanoparticles are extensively trailed as catalysts for efficient on-demand hydrogen generation from those materials. We are, however, yet to reach a stage where the hydrogen generation is rapid enough to be used in applications such as in an aircraft.


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