April Fools

Nuclear Power and Hydrogen: Fueling the Energy Needs of the Future and Beyond!

Pink hydrogen made using nuclear energy will provide the power of tomorrow, fueling everything from robot warehouses to flying cars.

April 1, 2023

a happy atom.

Natural nuclear power, like that from the sun, will usher us into a golden hydrogen age.

Hydrogen, the most abundant element in the universe. And nuclear furnaces, like those that power our sun. Put them together and they have the potential to drive industry, fuel transportation, and provide energy to the factories and skyscrapers of tomorrow. 

How could this be? you ask. Here on Earth?

Well, yes, hydrogen can be easily produced by splitting dihydrogen monoxide into hydrogen and oxygen in a process known as electrolysis. Don’t be scared! You won’t get shocked (or plucked), and dihydrogen monoxide? That is just what doctors of science call “water.”

It all sounds so simple when it’s explained like that, but not all hydrogen is the same. 

Hydrogen production now comes in all colors of the rainbow. Gray hydrogen is produced using dirty fossil fuels and is as old fashioned as the horse and buggy. That process still uses, and makes, a lot of carbon that is bad for the planet. We don’t want that in the world of tomorrow.

Blue hydrogen isn’t much better. It’s simply gray hydrogen where factories struggle to capture the carbon and lock it away.

Rare white hydrogen comes from natural deposits, and green hydrogen is made using “alternative” energy, those crazy power sources you might have heard of from the ’70s, like solar power and windmills. Far out!

To provide the electrons for tomorrow’s industries—whether that be a rocketship to Alpha Centauri or a hoverbike to the local malt shop—we’ll need energy. And lots of it. And that means using pink hydrogen. Pink hydrogen … that seems cozy and appealing. That’s because it is! Pink hydrogen is made with nuclear power. Tomorrow’s power today. But what’s that you say? You’ve heard that nuclear power is dangerous? 

Oh, far from it, but let’s ask someone who really knows, the head of Ohio’s Nucleotron Industries, Asa Tope. “Nuclear energy is as safe as bathing in any of Ohio’s many, many pristine waterways,” says Tope. “The same water,” he adds, “that keeps our state’s prosperous chemical plants clean and provides the hydrodynamic cooling for Nucleotron’s post-modern fleet of power plants.”

a cartoon red hover car in retro 1950s style with a happy white man smoking a pipe in the driver's seat and a white woman in the passenger seat.

The car of tomorrow, powered by HYDROGEN.

What about that so-called radioactivity? Should we worry about that?

“I’m glad you asked,” encouraged Tope. “We use only the finest made-in-the-good-ol’-U.S.A. uranium to produce Nucleotron’s power and plutonium—plutonium that could be used to fuel future spacecraft!” But until those rockets are ready, Tope says, that plutonium is kept at the ready onsite in casks that were manufactured in glimmering state-of-the-art steel factories right up the road. “Steel facilities that could be powered by … that’s right, hydrogen!”

For those still wondering about onsite storage, Tope assures us that the plutonium is completely safe for future use—and that, even today, plans are being made to transport it cross country via ultramagnetic levitation high-speed rail, after which the plutonium will be encased in gleaming, climate-controlled storage facilities far beneath our most pristine national parks.

“We’ve put one of the most trustworthy, responsible industrial icons of our era—Norfolk Southern—in charge of transporting and managing our plutonium,” said Tope. “I certainly sleep better at night knowing their diligent, detail-oriented staff is on the job.” 

With assurances like that, pink hydrogen is sure to have a bright future, one that will provide the undying energy necessary to keep America’s lights, and the world’s, on the … glow.

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April 1, 2023 - 11:23 am

I wasn't paying attention to what day it was when I started reading. You start out pretty factually, but then you lay on the sarcasm pretty thick. And it appears that pink hydrogen (i.e. hydrogen from nuclear) is actually a thing; I had to even question that (it's hard for me to keep all of the hydrogen colors straight).

April 1, 2023 - 2:25 pm

Yes, all colors of the rainbow! Happy April Fool's Day!

April 1, 2023 - 3:07 pm

Yeah, pink hydrogen.. who knew? Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction...though in this case it's a toss up .

April 1, 2023 - 7:27 pm

You guys always do such a great job of April Fools! This one is a double edged sword because the nuclear industry is really hot on it, for good reason: it is a lifeline. I wrote about it for that website that laid me off in January, interviewed a hydrogen expert who told me: “i don't think it makes ANY sense to waste nuclear electricity on making hydrogen. Nuclear plants produce dispatchable power already and that is highly useful to the grid. The reason nuclear advocates are reaching for hydrogen is that they know their value proposition is being eaten by allowing solar and wind onto the grid, which are far cheaper than nuclear when they're available. So whereas it is clear that making hydrogen from intermittent renewables at low capacity factor is not economic, the nuclear people are looking to intermittently make hydrogen from their power when the grid is instead being satisfied with cheaper wind and solar.”

April 2, 2023 - 1:48 am

What was served on the 2nd floor of 122 Birge Street?

April 2, 2023 - 10:15 am

I remember reading that one, now that you mention it. Seems spot on.

April 2, 2023 - 10:16 am

I think the chemical in the Birge Street Kool-Aid may have been either tritium or satirium. ;-)



April 2, 2023 - 12:15 pm

Could have been our steady diet of Tang and Space Food Sticks.

April 3, 2023 - 6:03 pm

clean, safe, too cheap to meter

April 3, 2023 - 6:41 pm

Not to mention PINK.