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Cost and Performance Targets for Fully Electrochemical Ammonia Production under Flexible Operation

Lazouski, Nikifar and Limaye, Aditya and Bose, Abhishek and Gala, Michal L. and Manthiram, Karthish and Mallapragada, Dharik S. (2022) Cost and Performance Targets for Fully Electrochemical Ammonia Production under Flexible Operation. ACS Energy Letters, 7 (8). pp. 2627-2633. ISSN 2380-8195. doi:10.1021/acsenergylett.2c01197.

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Methods to produce ammonia from air, water, and renewable electricity are necessary to transition ammonia production away from the CO₂-emitting Haber–Bosch process. In this vein, a fully electric process in which water-splitting-derived hydrogen and air-separation-derived nitrogen are reacted in an electrochemical process to produce ammonia is attractive. Herein, we evaluated the cost-effectiveness of large-scale fully electric ammonia production relying on renewable electricity sources in conjunction with different types of storage and flexible operation using a mixed-integer linear programming framework. We found that ammonia can be produced in an economically competitive manner, i.e., at costs < 1 $/kg, at large scales if the electrochemical reactor can produce ammonia at partial currents exceeding 400 mA cm⁻², energy efficiencies exceeding 30%, and process lifetimes of several years. In light of this, alternative chemistries that can reduce nitrogen at high rates and moderate (<2.5 V) overpotentials are necessary for economical, fully electrochemical ammonia production.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Lazouski, Nikifar0000-0002-4655-2041
Limaye, Aditya0000-0003-0639-4154
Bose, Abhishek0000-0003-4358-8601
Gala, Michal L.0000-0003-0676-5146
Manthiram, Karthish0000-0001-9260-3391
Mallapragada, Dharik S.0000-0002-0330-0063
Additional Information:© 2022 American Chemical Society. Received: May 23, 2022; Accepted: July 13, 2022. The findings reported here are adapted from a dissertation submitted by N.L.; previous versions of these case study results are archived in the MIT thesis repository. N.L., M.L.G., A.L., and K.M. gratefully acknowledge support by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 2204756. N.L. and A.L. acknowledge the support by the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship under Grant No. 1745302. A.B. acknowledges funding from the Energy Fellowship program at the MIT Energy Initiative. D.S.M. acknowledges support from the Future Energy Systems Center at the MIT Energy Initiative. The authors declare no competing financial interest.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSF Graduate Research FellowshipDGE-1122374
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)UNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Ammonia, Electrical energy, Electrical properties, Nitrogen, Power
Issue or Number:8
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20220317-376301000
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Cost and Performance Targets for Fully Electrochemical Ammonia Production under Flexible Operation. Nikifar Lazouski, Aditya Limaye, Abhishek Bose, Michal L. Gala, Karthish Manthiram, and Dharik S. Mallapragada. ACS Energy Letters 2022 7 (8), 2627-2633; DOI: 10.1021/acsenergylett.2c01197
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:113944
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:18 Mar 2022 19:44
Last Modified:24 Aug 2022 21:25

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