An Economic Perspective on Hydrogen Fuel

  • John E. Johnson


The economics for producing various transportable energy forms from domestic resources are reviewed and compared in order to place the prospects for hydrogen fuel in better perspective. From the published data available, it would appear that liquid methane could be a more serious economic competitor to adoption of hydrogen as an aviation fuel than is synthetic kerosene. Mission energy savings in the order of 30 percent are required to establish clear superiority for hydrogen fuel over kerosene when the criteria for selection is fuel economics alone. Methanol is an economically preferable choice to liquid hydrogen for ground transportation systems. Clearly, the concept of hydrogen fuel for ground transportation is contingent on the success of the proposed “hydride” technology which avoids expensive liquefaction processes. To clarify economic issues regarding hydrogen fuel, much more attention to, and reporting of, energy conservation features of hydrogen fueled “engines” is required in order to obtain the favorable economic verdict to proceed on development.


Heat Pump Liquid Hydrogen Hydrogen Fuel Aviation Fuel Synthetic Fuel 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1975

Authors and Affiliations

  • John E. Johnson
    • 1
  1. 1.Hydrogen Union Carbide CorporationNew YorkUSA

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