Hydrogen Basics

Hydrogen is the most common element in the Universe and is a perfect ‘green fuel’. On Earth, however, it does not exist in large quantities as a gas. Because of this, hydrogen must be extracted from other resources such as fossil fuels, biomass, or water. Hydrogen is considered a clean, inexhaustible energy source.

A fuel cell is a system that uses hydrogen as its fuel source through an electrochemical process, rather than through combustion.  Click here to learn more about how hydrogen works with fuel cell technology.

Fun Facts about Hydrogen

There are roughly 170 million billion tons of hydrogen tied up in the earth’s supply of water. Hydrogen is therefore the most abundant of all elements on Earth. (Remember, there are twice as many hydrogen atoms in water as there are oxygen atoms.) Hydrogen makes up about three-quarters of all matter.

Stars are mostly made of hydrogen, it is also the most abundant element in the universe, making up about 93% of all the atoms, and about three-quarters of the mass of the entire universe. 

61% of all the atoms in the human body are hydrogen atoms.

Every one of the 13 million known organic compounds contains hydrogen.

At the 10-million-degree temperatures of the interiors of stars, not only are hydrogen molecules separated into atoms, but each atom is ionized—separated into an electron and a nucleus. The nuclei, which are simply protons, fuse together, forming nuclei of helium atoms and giving off a great deal of energy in the process. By a series of such reactions, all of the heavier elements have been built up from hydrogen in the stars.

Hydrogen is the lightest element, because it has only 1 electron and 1 proton. 

The atomic weight of Hydrogen is 1.008. That’s why National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Day is celebrated on October 8th (10/08)​.

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