Water electrolysis is a mature technology that uses electrolyzers to convert water into hydrogen (and oxygen). Until now, 90% of hydrogen generation in the energy market was produced by steam methane reforming (SMR) also called natural gas reforming. However, the shift away from natural gas reforming is an expected outcome as low-carbon and renewable domestic energy sources become a priority. There are two types of electrolyzer systems, proton exchange membranes (PEM_ electrolyzers) and alkaline electrolyzers. Each has its advantages and disadvantages but PEM electrolyzer systems are gaining in popularity with lower costs.
When PEM electrolyzers convert water into hydrogen and oxygen, this electrochemical system can create highly corrosive and energy inefficient environments if metal components used in the system are not properly protected. As more of the energy market shifts toward utilizing water electrolysis for hydrogen production, the availability of low-cost metal coating alternatives is key.