How do they convert natural gas into green hydrogen?

The majority of the world’s hydrogen is currently produced via steam methane reforming (SMR) process, which requires a significant amount of energy input and emits a substantial amount of CO₂. Additionally, hydrogen produced in centralized industrial plants must travel a great distance to reach its users. The International Energy Agency estimates that the costs of hydrogen transportation could be three times that of its production.

On-site production of hydrogen can be realized by the electrolysis of water without emitting CO₂. However, electrolysis wastes 35% of the original input power. Additionally, the cost of electrolysis-produced hydrogen is higher than that of SMR-produced hydrogen.

Several companies are developing methane pyrolysis that can inexpensively produce green hydrogen on-site.

Aurora Hydrogen

Aurora Hydrogen develops a clean hydrogen production technology that utilizes microwave energy to efficiently convert natural gas into hydrogen and solid carbon without emitting CO₂ or consuming water. The reactor system is scalable and can be installed anywhere, from small fueling stations to large industrial applications.

Aurora Hydrogen Feature

Aurora Hydrogen has raised a total of $10M in funding over 2 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on Aug 1, 2022 from a Series A round.

Aurora Hydrogen is funded by 6 investors.

Andrew Gillis is CEO.


Sakowin develops an on-site hydrogen production system based on the microwave plasma technology that converts methane into cost-competitive hydrogen gas and solid carbon without emitting CO₂. The hydrogen produced  on-site can be supplied directly to fuel cell vehicles, combustion engines, and energy conversion devices.

Sakowin feature

Sakowin has raised a total of €9.6M in funding. Their latest funding was raised in July 2022 from a Venture-Series Unknown round.

Sakowin is funded by 5 investors.

Gerard Gatt is CEO.

Monolith Materials

Monolith Materials has developed plasma pyrolysis of methane technology that converts natural gas into cost-effective hydrogen and carbon black on a commercial scale. This technology significantly reduces CO₂ emissions compared to the conventional SMR process when producing hydrogen.

Monolith Materials feature

Monolith has raised a total of $364.3M in funding over 9 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on Jul 14, 2022 from a Private Equity round.

Monolith is funded by 7 investors.

Robert Hanson is CEO.


HiiROC has developed methane pyrolysis technology that synergistically combines the plasma torch and liquid metal reactor to efficiently convert methane into hydrogen and carbon. This technique produces hydrogen at the same low cost as SMR while emitting no CO₂.

HiiROC feature

HiiROC has raised a total of $34.7M in funding over 2 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on Nov 28, 2021 from a Venture – Series Unknown round.

HiiROC is funded by 8 investors.

Tim Davies is CEO.

Hazer Group

Hazer Group develops systems of thermo-catalytic methane decomposition that convert methane into hydrogen gas and solid graphitic carbon without requiring catalyst recovery, thereby enhancing the economics of the process. At a temperature between  600 ºC and 1,000 ºC, a low-cost iron oxide catalyst catalyzes the pyrolysis of methane, producing cost-competitive hydrogen gas and pure graphite material.

Hazer Group feature

Hazer Group is publicly held. Share price see here.

Geoff Ward is CEO.

Ekona Power

Ekona Power develops a pulsed methane pyrolysis technology that uses natural gas and air to produce blue hydrogen and nitrogen in a 3:1 ratio for ammonia synthesis. The method for producing hydrogen reduces CO₂ emission by over 95% compared to conventional steam methane reforming methods.

Ekona Power feature

Ekona Power has raised a total of $68M in funding over 5 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on Feb 1, 2022 from a Series A round.

Ekona Power is funded by 15 investors.

Chris Reid is CEO.


CZero develops a thermal pyrolysis technology that utilizes catalytic molten metals to decarbonize the natural gas (methane) without emitting CO₂. With catalytic molten metals  (27% Ni–73% Bi alloy), methane converts into hydrogen and separable carbon. The solid carbon product can be readily handled and prevented from forming CO₂ in the atmosphere. This technology producing continuously separable carbon could make the cost of hydrogen competitive with SMR even without a CO₂ tax.

CZero feature

CZero has raised a total of $45.5M in funding over 3 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on Jun 16, 2022 from a Venture – Series Unknown round.

CZero is funded by 7 investors.

Zach Jones is CEO.

Modern Electron

Modern Electron develops on-site natural gas decarbonization technology that produces clean hydrogen and separable carbon without emitting CO₂. By using the combustion heat from on-site produced hydrogen, Modern Electron’s technology of combined heat and power device generates electricity and transfers waste heat to a heating system to provide hot water or steam to residential buildings. As depicted in the diagram below, the operation of the system emits no CO₂ while delivering heat and electricity to residential buildings.

Modern Electron feature

Modern Electron has raised a total of $40.8M in funding over 4 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on Apr 4, 2022 from a Grant round.

Modern Electron is funded by 10 investors.

Tony Pan is CEO.

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