Prof. S. Vasudevan

Chief Scientist CSIR-Central Electrochemical Research Institute

Presentation Title: Hydrogen: A Green Fuel for 21st Century


Generation of hydrogen from water via electrolysis is a well-known and established technology. There are two main types of electrolyser [Alkaline and Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM)] and both are well proven and long-lived. Electrolysis has been traditionally based on an alkaline technology, but Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) electrolysers are now coming to the forefront. However, due to the high cost of both electricity and material, only a small proportion (4 -5%) of the worldwide hydrogen production comes from electrolysis. Yet electrolyser costs are expected to drop within the few years as a consequence of standardization, mass-production, and a greater competitiveness. The demand for clean-produced hydrogen and its storage potential spell enormous possibilities for renewable electrolysis in the future. Even non-renewable electrolysis is bound to play an important role in the short-term as a source of moderate amounts of hydrogen for small fuelling stations and domestic applications. In future low-carbon economics, electrolyser technology could provide a central solution to meeting both the power management needs of the electricity sector and the needs of the transport and industrial sectors for low/zero carbon fuels.  Electrolytic hydrogen could thereby displace large proportions of non-electricity fuel consumption.  Hence, the new market potential for electrolyser dwarfs the existing market potential and on a global scale it is truly vast. In this talk some of the important and recent developments in the electrochemical alternatives with newer materials for hydrogen generation are discussed. The talk also covers hydrogen based technologies developed at CSIR-CECRI.

Biographical Sketch

Prof. Vasudevan Subramanian is a Chief Scientist at the CSIR-Central Electrochemical Research Institute and Professor at the Academy of Scientific and Innovative Research, New Delhi. Through his creative, interdisciplinary and cutting edge research, Vasudevan has made extensive fundamental and applied contributions to the field of water electrolysis, water treatment, inorganic chemicals and storage batteries. His research has focused on novel electrocatalysts, electrolyser anode/cathode, electrochemical water treatment systems, anode/cathode for magnesium reserve batteries and synthesis of inorganic oxidants. He has also been actively engaged in innovative engineering of PEM based electrolyser, magnesium organic reserve batteries, electrocoagulation & electro-Fenton water treatment systems and electrolysis system for production of inorganic oxidants/chemicals. His assiduous involvement in research on electrochemistry earned him D.Sc (h.c) and ranked in TOP 2% of Scientists Worldwide (Stanford University). Dr.Vasudeban has authored over 120 scientific papers, has two dozen technical patents to his credit, transferred many technologies to industries and has over three decades of research/teaching experience in India’s premier R&D institution. Prof. Vasudevan is Fellow of Royal Society of Chemistry, Australian Institute of High Energetic Materials,Academy of Sciences Chennai and many other academies. He is a visiting faculty/professor in Indian/International Universities. Prof. Vasudevan is on the editorial boards and associate editor of many prestigious journals including Scientific Reports (Nature) and received numerous professional awards such as MRSI Medal. Prof. Vasudevan is Member Syndicate (Governor Nominee) & Officiating Vice Chancellor, Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai.