Making hydrogen from cow dung
Before our favorite anti-hydrogen commenter Howard chimes in, let's be clear and say that researchers at New Mexico State University are working on a hydrogen production method that is truly BS. The professors at NMSU are trying to get hydrogen out of cow manure and other organic waste materials. The idea is that biological production of hydrogen could be much more cost effective because it doesn't require as much energy input as electro-chemical and thermo-chemical methods.
The team, led by civil engineering professor Nirmala Khandan, is using a two-stage process to turn the dung into hydrogen gas. They are starting with anaerobic hydrolysis and fermentation, and in the second stage more hydrogen is produced by photo-fermentation. In the first stage they are using bacteria to consume the manure and produce hydrogen and other gases, and then the leftovers from that go into the second stage. If they could use the same types of processes to consume other kinds of animal waste, it may be an excellent way to deal with the problem of waste from industrial livestock farms.
[New Mexico State University]
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