Hydrogen is considered the most environmentally friendly and promising fuel, including for the space industry. Its main drawback is the storage mode. For example, to obtain liquefied hydrogen, it must be cooled to an extremely low temperature. Now a group of Japanese scientists from Wasade University has developed a flexible polymer that can be used to make a plastic container for storing and transporting liquid hydrogen.
The polymer was made from an organic substance called ketone, also known as fluorene, used to make anti-malaria drugs.
The resulting polymer can be formed into plastic "sheets" that retain hydrogen by electrolytic hydrogenation (absorption of hydrogen by the material from the gaseous state) in water at ambient temperature. When heated to +75 ° C, in combination with an aqueous iridium catalyst, the material releases hydrogen.
Experiments have shown that the polymer is safe, easy to process, strong enough, does not burn and is not toxic. This means that it is quite possible to make plastic containers for transporting hydrogen from it, which can even be carried in a pocket. In the future, fuel tanks for hydrogen cars and various gadgets may appear, as well as gas storage facilities for hydrogen for heating residential buildings.