In this chapter, we present a detailed design study of a novel, scalable, self‐contained solar powered electrolytic sodium (Na) metal production plant meant to enable a hydrogen (H2) fuel, sustainable, closed clean energy cycle. The hydrogen fuel is generated on demand inside a motor vehicle using an efficient hydrogen generation apparatus that safely implements a controlled chemical reaction between either ordinary salinated (sea) or desalinated (fresh) water and sodium metal. The sodium hydroxide (NaOH) byproduct of the hydrogen generating chemical reaction is stored temporarily within the hydrogen generation apparatus and is recovered during motor vehicle refueling to be reprocessed in the self‐contained sodium (Na) metal production plant. The electric power for NaOH electrolysis is produced using photovoltaic (PV) device panels spatially arrayed and electrically interconnected on a tower structure that maximizes the use of scarce land area. Our analysis shows that the scalable, self‐contained sodium (Na) metal production plant using solar power is technically and economically viable for meeting the hydrogen fuel clean energy needs of all the motor vehicles in the U.S.A. by constructing approximately 450,000 scalable, self‐contained sodium (Na) metal production plant units in the southwestern desert region that includes West Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and Southern California.
Part of the book: Recent Improvements of Power Plants Management and Technology