Ammonia from Hydrogen
Using the Haber Bosch process, ammonia has been produced from hydrogen and nitrogen from the air around us since 1910. This process works optimally at very high pressure and heat, which means that the energy requirement for producing ammonia is considerable. Because this process requires 3 times as much hydrogen as nitrogen, use is often made of the production of hydrogen from natural gas. The methane from the natural gas is converted into carbon monoxide and hydrogen by means of steam (water). The carbon monoxide is then converted back into hydrogen and CO2.
This form of hydrogen production is a major consumer of energy due to the use of natural gas as a basis and the generation of steam. Each year, approximately 200 million tons of ammonia is produced, with an energy requirement of approximately 1.5% of the total energy production. The ammonia produced is often used for the production of fertilizers.