Hydrogen Energy Sources

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Introduction

America is built on available energy

There is nothing wrong with America that the faith, love of freedom, intelligence and energy of her citizens cannot cure

Dwight D. Eisenhower

US general & Republican politician (1890 - 1969)

When President Eisenhower uttered those words, I don't imagine he would have envisioned the critical role which energy plays in 21st Century America. Everywhere we look, energy is being transformed and consumed. Our cars need it. Our emails to family use it. The strawberries we eat in Wisconsin arrived here, courtesy of the energy used in the transportation systems.

America has always thrived on abundant energy.

Early American Energy Sources

Many of the pre-revolutionary portraits show famous people standing by a fireplace. Wood was the plentiful energy source in pre-revolutionary years in America. Trees were available free for the taking in the early years of our country.

In the 1600's, 1700's and 1800's, wood was by far the dominant energy source, but coal growing in use.

But, as scientists dug deeper into the sources of energy and matter, in 1776 Cavendish discovered Hydrogen. His experiments isolated this most fundamental of elements, setting the stage for expanded use of Hydrogen in the 21st Century.

1900's Energy Sources

In the first half of the century, coal becomes the dominant energy source in America. During the 1900's, when population increased nearly 4 times, energy usage increased 10 times . Petroleum energy usage grew dramatically and became the dominant energy source by the end of the century. By the end of the century, energy usage in America quadrupled compared to the 1800's. Partly this was due to the increased population in America, but mostly this was due to the need for societal changes brought on by World Wars I and II.

2000's Energy Sources

In this early portion of the 21st century, petroleum energy remains the dominant energy source. And, due to the changing nature of our industries, natural gas has become much more common as an energy source than coal or wood. But a growing energy resource is Hydrogen.

What is hydrogen?

The name Hydrogen comes from the Greek language: Hydro: water, genes: forming . As we noted earlier, Henry Cavendish is given credit for isolating pure Hydrogen and defining some of its key properties. Some of those properties include that it is:

Colorless

Ordorless

Non-metalic

Univalent

Highly flammable

Diatomic gas.

It is the most abundant element in the universe.

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