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Sustainability 2018, 10(2), 478; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10020478

Analysis of Trends and Emerging Technologies in Water Electrolysis Research Based on a Computational Method: A Comparison with Fuel Cell Research

1
SUNCAT Center for Interface Science and Catalysis, Department of Chemical Engineering, Stanford University, 443 Via Ortega, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
2
Department of Technology and Innovation Management, School of Environment and Society, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo 108-0023, Japan, takeuchi@mot.titech.ac.jp (M.T.)
Current address: Department of Socio-Environmental Energy Science, Graduate School of Energy Science, Kyoto University, Yoshida-Honmachi, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 December 2017 / Revised: 31 January 2018 / Accepted: 7 February 2018 / Published: 11 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hydrogen Economy: Technology and Social Issue)
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Abstract

Water electrolysis for hydrogen production has received increasing attention, especially for accumulating renewable energy. Here, we comprehensively reviewed all water electrolysis research areas through computational analysis, using a citation network to objectively detect emerging technologies and provide interdisciplinary data for forecasting trends. The results show that all research areas increase their publication counts per year, and the following two areas are particularly increasing in terms of number of publications: “microbial electrolysis” and “catalysts in an alkaline water electrolyzer (AWE) and in a polymer electrolyte membrane water electrolyzer (PEME).”. Other research areas, such as AWE and PEME systems, solid oxide electrolysis, and the whole renewable energy system, have recently received several review papers, although papers that focus on specific technologies and are cited frequently have not been published within the citation network. This indicates that these areas receive attention, but there are no novel technologies that are the center of the citation network. Emerging technologies detected within these research areas are presented in this review. Furthermore, a comparison with fuel cell research is conducted because water electrolysis is the reverse reaction to fuel cells, and similar technologies are employed in both areas. Technologies that are not transferred between fuel cells and water electrolysis are introduced, and future water electrolysis trends are discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: water electrolysis; alkaline water electrolyzer; polymer electrolyte membrane water electrolyzer; solid oxide electrolyzer; microbial electrolyzers; hydrogen production; bibliometrics; citation network water electrolysis; alkaline water electrolyzer; polymer electrolyte membrane water electrolyzer; solid oxide electrolyzer; microbial electrolyzers; hydrogen production; bibliometrics; citation network
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Ogawa, T.; Takeuchi, M.; Kajikawa, Y. Analysis of Trends and Emerging Technologies in Water Electrolysis Research Based on a Computational Method: A Comparison with Fuel Cell Research. Sustainability 2018, 10, 478.

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