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Generation of Hydrogen and Oxygen Gas from Water Electrolysis Using Solar Energy

November 21, 2019


    Hydrogen is vital when looking at industrial processes. Hydrogen can be used as a refrigerant and can be used in superconductor research, ultra-cold condition research, hydrogen-electric car, energy generation, space industry, and electricity industry. Oxygen is also crucial to all living creatures, thus is used commonly in hospitals or emergencies. Oxygen is used as an antibacterial and is also used in welding, blast furnace industrial processes and so on. Liquid oxygen is widely used as a rocket propellant.

    Due to the development of science, the production of electricity from solar energy has been highly increased. Today, sunlight generators are widely seen in South Korea as well. Generally, electricity obtained from the generators needs to be charged. However, several charging techniques are required and there can be minor drawbacks when charging the electricity. Therefore, this experiment investigated whether it could be possible to effectively obtain hydrogen and oxygen from water hydrolysis with electricity generated from the sunlight generators.

    Based on our observation, it was concluded that 18.0 ~20.0 volts of electricity were generated in 1200 lux of light intensity, which created an average 100~120 mL of hydrogen and 60 mL of oxygen each day. Three solutions of water, 0.5N HCl and 0.5 NaOH solutions were tested to find which solution could help the most for producing hydrogen. The result led us to conclude that HCl solution should be the best solution for water electrolysis.  Considering the data given, the water electrolysis could be the method of hydrogen generation for our future energy source.