This page was designed to be viewed with a browser that supports Cascading Style Sheets [CSS] and if you are using earlier versions [pre- ver.5.0] of Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator,you are missing out on a pleasant viewing experience. It is best that you upgrade your browser soon as most of the sites will increasingly make use of CSS.

 gniLogo GoodNewsIndia ::Supplement

Being rich is good -- being relevant is better. ©

Prev: Two breakthroughs  |  Next: Bunker Roy wins the St Andrews's Prize

Page: <  1 2
Ideas For India

May 21, 2003
Hydrogen power for India’s villages?

John has sent a link from where an informative interview with Van Ooetegham can be heard [ click here . Real Audio Player required. These audio files may be available only for another month. After that time search Google with these keywords: Thermotoga neapolitana, hydrogen, Van Ooetegham].

What emerges is an exciting option for India. The bacteria is widely found. The feed-stock to keep them producing needs to be a glucose centred waste; so sugar cane, beet and starch based agricultural waste can be used. Sanitary and sewage wastes may be converted to hydrogen too. The strategy is not to bother with storage of hydrogen but to lead the generated gas into small fuel cells to generate electricity that would be convivial and environmentally benign. These would be truly autonomous locally sustained systems doing away with power lines and losses. There are other synergies too. One of the problems with fuel cells is the excessive heat they generate, resulting in just 40% efficiency. It so happens the Van Oetegham process requires the bio-reactor to be kept at 75 deg.C so the fuel cell heat can be put to use raising overall efficiency. Also this requirement can be made to serve as a switch: lower the temperature and production stops, raise it and the bacteria kick in again.

The piece-de-resistance for India is the financial scale of things. For six years now the Van Oetegham team has been working on an annual budget of just $150,000 a year and a team of six. She believes that with just $2 million and four years the whole idea of naturally generated hydrogen can go industrial scale. It is widely believed that in India where comparable skills are available, costs are usually a third of what they are in the West. So these are sums of money many Indians can come up with.

The Van Ooetegham discovery seems precisely targeted at India.

Page: <  1 2

HOME
Directories:: MagazineSupplementsBackstage
Print:: Text & ImagesText only

Send This Story To Friends

Print




GNI Mailing List
Sign UpLeave

Articles by category: ALL  Appeal  Activism  Economy  Elsewhere  Energy  Enthusiast  Environment  Governance  Ideas For India  Initiative  Innovation  Memory Speaks  Newsclip  Profile  Reforms  Resources  Sciences  Springs  Trend  Update  Water 

Write to GoodNewsIndia


 Shop at Amazon::Support GNI 

Internet Explorer distorts many of the styling features of this site. Switch to Firefox