Scientists have shown how using only water, iron, nickel and electricity can create hydrogen energy much more cheaply than before.

In research recently published in Nature Communications, scientists from UNSW Sydney, Griffith University and Swinburne University of Technology showed that capturing hydrogen by splitting it from oxygen in water can be achieved by using low-cost metals like iron and nickel as catalysts, which speed up this chemical reaction while requiring less energy.

Iron and nickel, which are found in abundance on Earth, would replace precious metals ruthenium, platinum, and iridium that up until now are regarded as benchmark catalysts in the ‘water-splitting’ process.

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