Popcorn-like aluminum-based powders for instant low-temperature water vapor hydrogen generation

Xinren Chen, Cuiping Wang, Yuheng Liu, Yansong Shen, Qijun Zheng, Shuiyuan Yang, Huanming Lu, Hongwei Zou, Kairui Lin, Hongxin Liu, Huajun Qiu, Junwei Wu, Qian Zhang, Xingjun Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Aluminum is a typical metal with a quick and self-healing passivation course. The dense oxidation film effectively prevents aluminum from being continuously oxidized by oxygen or water vapor. In this study, we report a kind of aluminum alloy powders that shows popcorn-like shape transformation in the reaction with low-temperature water vapor, which demonstrates that circumventing the passivation of aluminum alloy through the self-sustaining shape changes in hydrolysis reaction can become a reality. In-situ experiments disclosed that the hydrogen-assisted cracking and the interfacial corrosion play important roles in facilitating aluminum reactivity and cause a popcorn-like shape transformation. Moreover, the amorphous hydrated layer may enhance water transportation through the oxidation layer by the ‘spongy’ behavior. This study reveals a special corrosion mechanism of aluminum and provides a promising perspective of using aluminum in the energy field.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100602
JournalMaterials Today Energy
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Mar


  • Aluminum activation
  • Bismuth
  • Dispersed structure
  • Hydrogen-assisted cracking
  • Liquid-liquid phase separation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Materials Science (miscellaneous)
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Fuel Technology
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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