Organic Catalyst for Higher Rate of Hydrogen Generation & Efficient Solid-State Storage

Technology #31560

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A schematic view of a hydrogen gas generation device using LiBH4 tablets
Clovis Linkous, Ph.D.
Danielle Nangle
Darlene Slattery, Ph.D.
Patent Protection

Catalysts for the evolution of hydrogen from borohydride solution

US Patent 7,722,853 B2

Catalysts for the evolution of hydrogen from borohydride solution

US Patent 7,591,864 B2

Catalysts for the evolution of hydrogen from borohydride solution

US Patent 7,842,276 B1

A method for controlling the generation of hydrogen gas from a metal borohydride solution with organic pigment catalysts.

A comparably priced but more active catalyst in the process to solidify hydrogen that overcomes its significant barrier to automotive adoption is a move toward sustainability, environmental protection, and energy independence. Storing hydrogen safely and efficiently must be accomplished before it can be a widespread, mainstay fuel source because it is a gas in standard conditions.

Based on the simple molecular gas H2, this domestic and environmentally “green” fuel must be stored on-board a vehicle in heavy, pressurized cylinders that are difficult to carry as a supply when traveling relatively far. When stored as a solid, hydrogen could overthrow refined petroleum fuel as the source to power the market of over 1 billion cars worldwide. A route to overcoming this, by converting H2 to its solid state, relies significantly on catalysts in the process of H2 generation from a borohydride solution. Conventional catalysts are often inorganic metallic powders that are not as active as a newly invented organic catalyst that offers a higher rate of hydrogen generation at a comparable cost.

Technical Details

A method using the organic pigment catalyst, the critical aspect of this technology, calls for immersing the catalyst in borohydride solution for a controllable rate of onboard hydrogen gas generation for fuel cells or combustion engines, primarily in vehicles. These catalysts accelerate the reaction by acting as an oxidizing agent toward the borohydride ion and a reducing agent of the production of hydrogen. With this type of catalyst, H2 generation from a borohydride solution can be accomplished with readily available materials, versatility, reliability, and accuracy. The new way of hydrogen release enables accurate and economical material and fuel consumption.


  • Higher rate of hydrogen generation
  • Safe and effective hydrogen storage
  • On-board and on-demand usefulness
  • Supports environmentally sustainable fuel


  • Hydrogen-fueled applications

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