Below is the text version for the Hydrogen Materials Advanced Research Consortium (HyMARC) video.
The video opens by showing hydrogen storage tanks at an outdoor site.
Mark Allendorf, HyMARC Co-Director, Sandia National Laboratories: Hydrogen is an industrial commodity that is used worldwide to make everything from plastics to fertilizer. It's also a really intriguing fuel. It's beginning to be used in passenger vehicles. But this is a very challenging problem.
The video shows a driver pulling up to a hydrogen station in a fuel cell vehicle and fueling the vehicle with hydrogen.
Tom Gennett, HyMARC Co-Director, National Renewable Energy Laboratory: We're trying to develop a new infrastructure. You're looking at a whole new technology that eventually will replace a century-old technology that is very well developed.
The video shows a person replacing the hydrogen nozzle on the dispenser unit after fueling the car.
Mark Allendorf: Hydrogen storage is probably one of the greatest scientific challenges of our time. These materials are extremely complex. It's really beyond the capabilities of any one institution.
The video shows a series of images of researchers working in lab settings.
Tom Gennett: The only way you're going to attack this complex problem is by bringing in the best scientists that you can to work on it.
The video shows an outdoor sign that says, "Department of Energy."
Mark Allendorf: A few years ago, the Department of Energy recognized this problem, and they realized that even though a lot of effort had been invested to try to discover effective materials, we really didn't understand how they work.
The video shows researchers working with lab equipment for material characterization, then cuts to the HyMARC logo and the logos of Sandia National Laboratories, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, and National Institute for Standards and Technology.
Mark Allendorf: And that's whole point of HyMARC. HyMARC has brought together six national laboratories that have complementary capabilities. Our purpose is to try to tackle and solve these fundamental scientific problems using state-of-the-art synthetic methods, supercomputing, and characterization tools that allow us to look at all of these different length scales and understand the processes that are controlling how these materials behave.
The video shows a material synthesis lab, a supercomputer, and a material characterization lab, then it cuts to showing a gloved hand picking up a small clear vial containing a solid material.
Jeff Urban, HyMARC Principal Investigator, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: Historically really there are two kinds of materials that store hydrogen very well. There are adsorbents and there are metal hydrides.
Jeffrey Long, HyMARC Principal Investigator, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: Adsorbent is a solid substance that's very porous and it's particularly good at soaking up gas molecules. And that will help densify the gas in the tank.
The video shows researchers working in a lab and a close-up of a cold liquid nitrogen tank.
Jeff Urban: Metal hydrides, as their name suggests, they're really just metals that form very nice bonds to hydrogen. And kind of the magic of them, and the reason why they're interesting, is because they store hydrogen very densely. I often talk about these as kind of like a sponge for hydrogen.
The video shows a researcher working with lab equipment, then cuts to a view of the equipment under the hood of a fuel cell vehicle.
Jeffrey Long: And so our goal is to make a solid material that would go inside of this tank and allow us to drop the pressure from 700 bar to say 100 bar max pressure. And if we can do that then that will allow us to use a cheap, lightweight, conformable tank so you can use all the small bits of the car to store hydrogen, and it'll cut down on all that energy for compressing the hydrogen at very high pressures.
Mark Allendorf: Synthesizing nanoscale materials that have exactly the same properties over and over again is a big problem, very difficult. That's one of the things that HyMARC is working on, is to make metal hydrides in environments that are consistent over and over again.
The video shows a researcher open a door to reveal a large white pipe with a sign on it that says, "Molecular Foundry."
Brandon Wood, HyMARC Principal Investigator, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory: A lot of the strategies we're looking at are things like nanoconfinement: how do we take a hydrogen storage material, put it in a confining matrix, have smaller particles that then have much faster and better performance?
The video shows a molecular simulation.
Brandon Wood: So we're doing a lot of guidance on the computational side and trying to understand: how do materials behave when we make them small and we confine them in a matrix? We're also looking at trying to understand materials that perhaps initially work well but then stop working later on or have very slow performance later on in their cycling.
The video shows another molecular simulation.
Brandon Wood: Can we understand something about the period of time when the materials are actually working well, and can we engineer then the materials so that that behavior is maintained throughout the entire cycling?
David Prendergast, HyMARC Principal Investigator, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: HyMARC utilizes a wide range of cutting-edge characterization tools that are unprecedented, I would say, in the history of hydrogen storage research. For example, we have techniques that consist of infrared spectroscopy, so-called DRIFTS technique, that allows us to look at materials that are not normally penetrable with infrared light.
The video shows a series of images of researchers working in lab settings.
David Prendergast: We also have techniques such as solid-state NMR at Pacific Northwest National Lab that allows us to look at individual chemistry inside hydrogen storage materials as they change.
The video shows a fish-eye view inside a large facility, then shows different equipment within the facility.
David Prendergast: And then we come to places like this. We're here at the Advanced Light Source to learn with X-rays about the interior workings of hydrogen storage materials as they're functioning. And so all of this suite of techniques allow us to really dig into the details about how hydrogen storage materials are functioning and then help us understand: what are the bottlenecks in those processes that either slow the introduction of hydrogen or its removal?
Mark Allendorf: It's not just storage in the vehicle. The Department of Energy has a program called H2@Scale, which is looking at the entire problem from production to storage to utilization.
The video shows a slide containing the H2@Scale logo.
Tom Autrey, HyMARC Principal Investigator, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: The Hydrogen at Scale initiative is looking for hydrogen carriers to be able to do things beyond fuel cell vehicles. Looking at things to be able to―for power generation, storing hydrogen so you can do power generation later. Or making ammonia, upgrading biofuels and biomass type of materials. So it's a much larger part of the DOE mission.
Mark Allendorf: We are trying to focus our efforts in HyMARC on the things that are going to make the most difference. And we feel an imperative to do that. We know this is a big problem and we want to solve it.
The video shows a series of images of researchers working in a lab.
Jeff Urban: I'm excited about a future where we don't have to stare at the scoreboard for where energy is coming from and what's going on all the time.
Tom Gennett: Someday 50 years from now maybe one of my kids'll be driving a fuel cell car, and they can go, "Well, yeah, my dad was working on those a long time ago."
The video shows a fuel cell car driving down the street, then cuts to show the logos of HyMARC, the seven participating labs, and the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fuel Cell Technologies Office.