Water electrolysis involves the splitting of H2O into its constituent hydrogen and oxygen gases. This method is used to generate fuel sources that can power fuel cells and other devices. Water electrolysis is being investigated as a method to sustainably create clean fuels such as hydrogen gas. This reaction is green and sustainable providing that the electricity used to split water is sourced from renewable feedstocks. The reaction occurs over two electrodes, the anode and the cathode. At the anode, water is oxidised to O2, H+ and electrons, while at the cathode, H+ is reduced to hydrogen gas.
While water electrolysis is an important reaction to generate hydrogen and oxygen gases, the inverse reaction is essential for the generation of electricity to power fuel cells. Both reactions require catalysts to ensure reactions occur quickly, efficiently and with minimal energetic input. Umicore PMC offers a range of platinum and iridium catalysts to facilitate the electrolysis of water. Get in touch today to find out how our catalysts can help you create new polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells.