Hydrogen is the first element in the periodic system and is the most abundant one in the universe. In fact, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and carbon are the main building blocks of our physical world. And yet we seem to know so little about hydrogen. And what we think we know is very often connected to assumptions. Is it all prejudice? What are the facts? Should we in fact get more acquainted with hydrogen and its positive and perhaps even negative aspects?
For decades hydrogen has lived a prominent but hidden existence in industry, as a feedstock, a building block, a shielding gas, a coolant in powerplants or a fuel for space missions.
Indeed, city gas also used to contain very high levels (up to 60%) of hydrogen, but in our everyday lives hydrogen never seemed to play an important role. For those amongst us who did hear about hydrogen, it was most likely in chemistry class, making oxyhydrogen (a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen) to create a very reactive and impressive combustion.
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