In recent industrial world, hydrogen economy has been arising as an issue. Thus the technology to separate existing hydrogen by converging it with a different element on earth has been drawing attention.
The most common hydrogen separation technology includes “hydrogen by-product”, “natural gas reformation”, “water electrolysis technology”, and other non-verified methods exists, such as separation using graphene. “Hydrogen by-product method” is separating hydrogen through inducing an electrochemical reaction by adding oxygen to hydrogen by-product generated from petrochemical complex. “Natural gas reformation” is a way to separate natural gas using high temperature and high pressure water vapor. More than half of hydrogen separation is performed through this method. It is the most cost effective method, yet high carbon dioxide emission is the downside of this method. Hydrogen by-product and natural gas reformation are being used in industrial field, but it is not appropriate for inhalation purposes.
Inhalation appropriate water electrolysis technology includes polyelectrolyte method and alkali electrolyte method. Polyelectrolyte method (also known as PEM Proton Exchange Membrane) is the safest way to produce hydrogen gas to be constantly inhaled at hospitals and home. As you need to separate using pure white gold and not adding any additives in sterile distilled water, the downside is that it is expensive. But it allows us to inhale hydrogen with purity of 99.9%, and has been acknowledged as a technology with vast potential in the future.
On the other way, alkali electrolyte method is a relatively old method, and it provides hydrogen gas through a filter that filters contaminants and odor that occurs from separated gas. This is because NaOH, an electrolysis catalysts, or calcium hydroxide is added to water. Calcium hydroxide is caustic soda that performed electrolysis on industrial salt, and is known to have high corrosiveness. (source: Doosan Encyclopedia)
For molecular hydrogen gas that is inhaled for health purpose, purity of the gas is the priority. Alkali electrolyte hydrogen separation device used in industrial and experimental purpose is not appropriate for inhalation purposes. We must inhale hydrogen gas that is separated via Polyelectrolyte (PEM) technology.
High-tech polyelectrolyte (PEM) technology produces hydrogen with the purity of 99.9995%.
This system uses white gold catalyst and PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) technology to separate ionized water by its composition. PEM allows cation exchange between different sections, and the membrane acts as a cell’s electrolyte, so that harmful liquid electrolytes such as sodium hydroxide and potassium becomes unnecessary.
Once D.C. Voltage is allowed into the device, the water is supplied through positive and negative poles or through oxygen electrode, and oxidized into proton and oxygen, and the electrolytes are released. Proton (H+ ion) passes PEM and migrates through hydrogen electrode, meets an electron at the opposite side of the circuit and is transformed into hydrogen gas.
The reaction is like the following.
Therefore, the major component is hydrogen, oxygen, and moisture.