Combination of Electro- and Radiochemical Processes for Hydrogen and Oxygen Obtaining

Journal Journal of Mechanical Engineering – Problemy Mashynobuduvannia
Publisher Anatolii Pidhornyi Institute for Mechanical Engineering Problems
National Academy of Science of Ukraine
ISSN  2709-2984 (Print), 2709-2992 (Online)
Issue Vol. 26, no. 4, 2023 (December)
Pages 59-66
Cited by J. of Mech. Eng., 2023, vol. 26, no. 4, pp. 59-66



Viktor V. Solovei, Anatolii Pidhornyi Institute of Mechanical Engineering Problems of NAS of Ukraine (2/10, Pozharskyi str., Kharkiv, 61046, Ukraine), e-mail:, ORCID:0000-0002-5444-8922

Janis Kleperis, Institute of Solid State Physics, University of Latvia (8, Kengaraga str., Riga, LV-1063, Latvia), e-mail:, ORCID: 0000-0002-1463-902X

Mykola M. Zipunnikov, Anatolii Pidhornyi Institute of Mechanical Engineering Problems of NAS of Ukraine (2/10, Pozharskyi str., Kharkiv, 61046, Ukraine), e-mail:, ORCID: 0000-0002-0579-2962



It is shown that increase in the hydrogen production process efficiency can be ensured by integrating radiochemical and electrochemical processes. In this case, the obtained effect depends not only on the direct radiolysis of water, but also on the involvement of the ionizing radiation energy in the electrolysis process for the excitation of water molecules that undergo electrolysis, which leads to a decrease in the consumption of electricity for the decomposition of its gaseous components. An analysis of the main factors influencing the reduction of electricity consumption during electrolysis is presented, and the affinity of the spectra of radical ions involved in the radiation and electrochemical processes of water decomposition is shown. As a result of radiation exposure, the most energy-intensive stage of water decomposition, associated with the breaking of intermolecular bonds and the formation of active particles involved in the electrochemical process, begins. It was established that the formation of hydrogen increases due to the addition of its direct output during radiolysis and indirect production during electrolysis, initiated by the activation effects caused by ionizing radiation. It is shown that in order to increase the direct radiolytic yield of hydrogen, elements containing nanosized zirconium dioxide powder should be placed in the interelectrode space of the electrolyzer. It has also been proven that the irradiation of zirconium dioxide placed in water leads to a 4-fold increase in the yield of hydrogen compared to the option of irradiating pure water. To increase the energy potential utilization coefficient of nuclear fuel at NPPs, it is expedient to use the energy of fuel elements located in spent nuclear fuel storage pools for the application of the proposed technology. This will ensure the utilization of the ionizing radiation energy, which in existing technologies is irretrievably lost, because it is discharged in the form of low-temperature thermal emissions into the environment, which leads to thermal pollution of the atmosphere.


Keywords: hydrogen, electrolysis, spent fuel elements, energy, water molecules.


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Received 21 July2023

Published 30 December 2023