Press Release | Oceanit’s HALO Awarded Dept of Energy Backing to Advance Clean Hydrogen

EDGE, Energy, Press Release

Oceanit’s AI-Driven Hydrogen Production System Wins Department of Energy Backing to Generate Clean H2 from Produced Water

  • DOE’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) is supporting technologies that will help produce clean hydrogen at lower cost and with less energy
  • Oceanit’s HALO produces hydrogen using produced water from oil and natural gas development and production, and other wastes streams

Washington DC, Aug 18, 2023 | The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Fossil Energy and Carbon Management office announced the award of nearly $34 million to 19 industry- and university-led research projects that will advance cutting-edge technology solutions in clean hydrogen development. Oceanit was awarded $5 million in continuing support to help further development and deployment the HALO system for clean hydrogen production.

For decades, hydrogen has been theorized to be able to power the entire world cleanly and sustainably. Hydrogen is a versatile energy carrier, considered ‘clean’ because its only byproduct when consumed is water vapor. Because of this, H2 holds vast potential to decarbonize the energy sector and other industries that are difficult to electrify.

However, producing pure H2 efficiently has proven difficult. The process of separating hydrogen from water molecules (H2O), known as electrolysis, was discovered in the late 1700s and that technology is still fundamentally used today. There has been precious little innovation in the process, but HALO is one approach to revolutionizing hydrogen production. HALO uses directed energy technology developed for the defense industry to produce hydrogen from any water source, including polluted or briny salt water.

HALO, or ‘Hydrogen-recovery using Arc-plasma Learning Optimization’ system provides a scalable solution to achieve both H2 recovery and the simultaneous disposal of wastewater produced during oil and natural gas extraction. Known as “produced water”, this is a byproduct of traditional fossil fuel production. HALO also supports mineral recovery, such as lithium, from produced water.

“Clean hydrogen is one of our most versatile tools to slash emissions and forge a carbon-free pathway for a sustainable clean energy future,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm in the press release. “With today’s announcements, DOE is supporting the continued advancement of clean hydrogen technology making it cheaper to produce and easier to deploy, all while creating good-paying jobs in the process.”

Utilizing produced water as feedstock, HALO uses directed energy technology to dissociate produced water into valuable end products in addition to hydrogen, such as valuable minerals like Lithium, Manganese, Aluminum, and more. The system also incorporates advanced artificial intelligence to optimize the hydrogen dissociation process and increase efficiency while reducing operating costs. HALO can work with any wastewater source but is initially focused on the produced water that exists anywhere that oil & gas is being extracted.

“The western states, in support of hydrogen transition, are looking at new technologies that can cost-effectively use produced water as one of the water sources for Hydrogen. New Mexico Produced Water Research Consortium is looking forward to working with Oceanit to facilitate and evaluate the technical and economic feasibility of HALO with produced water.”

Mike Hightower, Director of New Mexico Produced Water Research Consortium

HALO will ultimately be able to operate directly from wind or solar power, resulting in authentically green hydrogen production. The research, development, and implementation of HALO presents huge potential benefits to communities throughout the United States as we rise to meet growing energy needs while also preserving natural resources through innovative water management.

“HALO can play an important role in the circular economy of produced water by generating green hydrogen without desalination of produced water. It will also help conserve the fresh water as we would be using the produced water to generate hydrogen. In addition to this, it will help mitigate the seismicity as it will reduce the volume of water being injected downhole.”

Rajendra Ghimire, Consultant

Read the full Dept of Energy press release here.

About Oceanit

Founded in 1985, Oceanit is a “Mind to Market” company that creates disruptive technology from fundamental science. Utilizing the unique discipline of Intellectual Anarchy, Oceanit reimagines innovation to break the bonds of normal and solve the impossible — delivering technologies to the market that impact humans and society. Oceanit’s diverse teams work across aerospace, healthcare, energy, and industrial/ consumer technologies, as well as on environmental and climate matters.  Through engineering and scientific excellence, Oceanit transforms fundamental science into impactful, market-focused technologies used around the world.