Hydrogen has the potential to become a major fuel in future decades. Its generalisation in energy production and transport applications may indeed solve the greenhouse problem due to the emissions of carbon dioxide from the chemical conversion of hydrocarbons. This new energy vector could also contribute to the energy independence of the European Union, if its safe, clean production, conversion to energy and utilization in transport are mastered.
The generalisation of hydrogen as the future energy vector needs scientific and technological progress in several domains constituting the « hydrogen cycle » :
– hydrogen generation by clean processes ;
– hydrogen transport and storage ;
– hydrogen conversion to energy ;
– hydrogen safety.
Several national, European and international actions are being developed today within these domains. As a contribution to such developments, a Franco-Italian initiative, GDRE, is proposed, focusing on the energetics and safety of hydrogen. This initiative will be enlarged to other European countries in due time.
GDRE involves Italian and French research institutes affiliated to the CNR and the CNRS, to various Italian and French universities or to energy agencies are at the forefront of the chemical conversion and safety research for various applications. These research centres have been collaborating for several years.
The purpose of creating GDRE is to strengthen this existing research collaboration in the combustion and propulsion domains, to contribute to the building of the European Research Area, and to increase the exchange opportunities for young researchers of both countries.
The mission of GDRE « Energetics and Safety of Hydrogen »is to develop and consolidate the scientific and technological knowledge in a number of specific research areas – more detail can be found under RESEARCH TOPICS on the GDRE webpage – and to contribute to the development of hydrogen generation plants, energy conversion units (burners and internal combustion engines) and transportation applications based on hydrogen and hydrogen enriched fuels.
The project is being coordinated by Dr Iskender Gökalp, ICARE-CNRS Director and Professor Antonio Cavaliere, Napoli Federico II University. More information is available at http://www.cnrs-orleans.fr/icare/WJ/GDR-H2/Index.htm,