Concerning hydrogen production on the base of nuclear technologies
The paper is dedicated to assuming a possibility of application sodium fast reactor technology for steam methane reforming (SMR) into hydrogen. Existence of three independent power loops in the Russian reactor BN-600 allows using a steam generator of one of these loops as a source of pressurized steam for preparation a steam-gas mixture with medium temperature, T = 505°С. To increase the mixture (steam + methane) temperature to the value required for effective SMR an additional heating is proposed. For this purpose the second independent power loop of the same reactor might be used. This loop’s 200 MW electric power can be supplied to the source of high temperature helium flux which has ability to increase the temperature of the converter up to the value of required temperature, T = 820°С. This technology allows obtaining great rate of hydrogen production, up to the value of 500 million normal cubic meters of hydrogen per 280 effective days of the reactor BN-600 operation in supplying 250 million cubic meters of natural gas to the converter. In this case, due to this technology, emission into the atmosphere of 130 thousand tons of the carbon dioxide can be excluded. This technology has advantage as compared to the standard now existing SMR technology which needs burning about 25 per cent of supplying natural gas for preparation and heating the steam and further heating the steam-gas mixture. Estimated cost of the BN-600 electric energy and the feeding natural gas consumption required for obtaining 1 normal cubic meter of hydrogen will be equal to 20 Russian rubles or approximately to 0.3 – 0.4 Euro.
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