Hydrogen production from formic acid

Hydrogen gas and carbon dioxide are produced by a catalytic reaction from formic acid carried out in an aq. soln. over a wide temp. range (20-200) in the presence of a formate salt. The catalyst has the general formula M(L)n with M being Ru preferably and at least on of the ligands L being a a mono, di- and/or tri sulfonated triphenylphosphine or its water sol. salts. The reaction is advantageous because it can be tuned to take place at very high rates, up to .apprx.90 L H2/min/L reactor vol. The gas produced is free of carbon monoxide. The method is particularly suitable for providing hydrogen for a motor, fuel cell, or chem. synthesis.


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