2016 Elishav The Nitrogen Economy Economic Feasibility Analysis of 6 Nitrogen Based Fuels as Energy Carriers

Production of transportable and environmentally friendly synthetic chemical fuels using 16 hydrogen produced by water splitting, using renewable energy will facilitate energy storage  and incorporation of renewable energy into the grid. Both carbon and nitrogen can serve as hydrogen carriers leading to carbon- or nitrogen-based fuels. Although the carbon route is vastly reported, the nitrogen-based analog is only scarcely described in the literature, and its economic potential is completely overlooked. Using levelized cost of storage analysis, this work evaluates for the first time the economic feasibility of a nitrogen economy, where liquid nitrogen-based fuels serve as alternative hydrogen carriers. The results indicate that an aqueous solution of ammonium hydroxide and urea is competitive with other future large-24 scale energy storage solutions such as methanol and batteries. At a hydrogen price below 2.5 $/kg, this fuel can be competitive with currently-used mature technologies.


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