Popular Mechanics is giving their readers the truth about hydrogen, describing what it thinks are the four major roadblocks to the hydrogen economy: production, storage, distribution and use. While a number of technologies are available to produce hydrogen, they each have their specific drawbacks.
To produce hydrogen without producing carbon emissions, electricity generated from renewable resources can be used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. The next generation of nuclear plants also promise to produce hydrogen without carbon emissions, but there are clearly other concerns when considering this option. When it comes to storing hydrogen, the different solutions either require significant amount of energy, or result in very large tanks or very heavy tanks. It sounds a lot like choosing between three evils. As for distribution, pipelines and local production sound like the solutions that are the most interesting.

While some see a hydrogen economy where everything is powered by the simplest element in the universe, the most promising use of hydrogen is in transportation. Whether hydrogen will be burned in internal combustion engines, or powering fuel cells, it might not be the silver bullet some people think it is, but it does have its place in a future where a whole array of energy alternatives will be available.

[Source: Popular Mechanics]

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