Can you separate hydrogen and oxygen molecules?

  • #1

Main Question or Discussion Point

Is separating hydrogen and oxygen molecules possible? If so, how?
 

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  • #2
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Is separating hydrogen and oxygen molecules possible? If so, how?
Are you talking about separating the two gases, or are you talking about decomposing water to produce hydrogen and oxygen?
 
  • #3
berkeman
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Is separating hydrogen and oxygen molecules possible? If so, how?
Is this related to your other thread?
I’m working on an idea that I have, and I was wondering if there was something that could repel hydrogen. Not water, not oxygen, just hydrogen. Thanks!
 
  • #4
Is this related to your other thread?
Yes, this is.
 
  • #5
Are you talking about separating the two gases, or are you talking about decomposing water to produce hydrogen and oxygen?
Decomposing water.
 
  • #6
Yes. Did this when I was 10. It's very easy
 
  • #7
berkeman
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Decomposing water.
Electrolysis. Just be careful with the Hydrogen gas that you generate. You put a lot of energy into the water to get it to split into Hydrogen and Oxygen...
 
  • #8
davenn
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Is separating hydrogen and oxygen molecules possible? If so, how?
Decomposing water.

it's a common process,
do some personal research and google it ... there should be lots of results
 
  • #10
Sorry, that was muratic acid and zinc. It the same process.
 
  • #11
davenn
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Don’t do this without professional supervision and a safety audit.
yeah, I should have mentioned that in my response o:)

cheers
Dave
 
  • #12
phyzguy
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Don’t do this without professional supervision and a safety audit.
Don't forget the Hindenburg!

Hindenburg_disaster.jpg
 

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  • #13
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Might be worth noting that it is pretty expensive (energy-wise) to separate water into hydrogen and oxygen..... that is to say it costs more energy to separate them than one can reasonably expect to get back by burning one, the other or both.

On the other hand, separating hydrogen from hydrocarbons is a much less costly procedure, and is being done with membranes (Palladium, alloys, and now even some stainless steel alloys - experimentally) ... This technology is seen as having serious potential for hydrogen generation for use in fuel cells. This sort of thing is in its early stages, but is currently being used aboard some US Navy submarines for power generation.

diogenesNY
 
  • #15
Might be worth noting that it is pretty expensive (energy-wise) to separate water into hydrogen and oxygen..... that is to say it costs more energy to separate them than one can reasonably expect to get back by burning one, the other or both.

On the other hand, separating hydrogen from hydrocarbons is a much less costly procedure, and is being done with membranes (Palladium, alloys, and now even some stainless steel alloys - experimentally) ... This technology is seen as having serious potential for hydrogen generation for use in fuel cells. This sort of thing is in its early stages, but is currently being used aboard some US Navy submarines for power generation.

diogenesNY
I believe that this is why my chemistry set experiment use muratic acid with one anode zinc and the other I can't recall. At ten, I wasn't using a high voltage.

This was back in the 70s when chemistry set included actual chemicals and all the ingredients for gun powder could be purchased at the hobby shop and drugstore.

My Stepfather did electrolysis for his copper plating but that required a substantial power supply.
 
  • #16
Something to note.is that NASA has engines that combine hydrogen and oxygen for thrust. It creates nothing but water. (No reference)
 

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