Green Hydrogen Systems (GHS) in Denmark has confirmed it has been selected to work with Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy to test the feasibility of large-scale production of green hydrogen from offshore wind
The wind energy giant is putting together a wind-to-hydrogen project in Denmark with GHS as its electrolysis partner.
The project will involve a 3-MW Siemens Gamesa turbine that feeds electricity into a GHS electrolyser. The electrolyser will use the electricity to split water into its constituent parts, hydrogen and oxygen. The oxygen will be released into the atmosphere, and the hydrogen will be stored for subsequent distribution and use as a fuel.
In a late August 2020 capital markets day presentation, Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy chief executive Andreas Nauen told attendees that the company sees wind energy “at the centre of an energy transition, with green hydrogen adding vast additional demand potential.”
The company’s acting chief executive offshore Pierre Bauer said “new frontiers are emerging” in which bottom-fixed and floating wind could provide electricity to produce green hydrogen on a large scale.
He said a “vast amount of offshore wind” could be required to meet future green hydrogen demand.
The green hydrogen project with GHS will help to determine the feasibility of producing it at the scale required.
“Offshore wind is optimal for large-scale deployment of green hydrogen,” he explained, thanks to its high-capacity factors and availability. He noted that the combination of experienced energy companies in offshore wind with distribution capacity could enable what he described as “ideal strategic alliances.”
GHS noted that demand for hydrogen produced from renewable energy is seeing “explosive growth,” with the global project pipeline skyrocketing from 3.2 to 15 GW in the past year alone. The EU recently announced an ambitious hydrogen strategy targeting 6 GW of installed capacity in by 2024 and 40 GW by 2030. In addition to this, Germany, the Netherlands, France, Portugal and Norway have established ambitious national strategies for green hydrogen production.
Siemens Gamesa power-to-x innovation manager Finn Daugaard Madsen said, “We are excited to launch this pioneering project and to have chosen GHS as our electrolysis partner.
“Their electrolyser will form a key component in the project, which we hope will lead to a very lean and cost-effective means of storing and utilising green energy from wind turbines.
GHS chief executive Niels-Arne Baden said, “Europe is really banking on sustainable energy, and green hydrogen will and must play at vital role in the coming transition. Siemens Gamesa, which has recently launched the world’s largest wind turbine, is an obvious leader in making wind-hydrogen production the next big power-2-x application.”
In a conventional wind turbine, the turbine is connected to the power grid, and the energy it produces is consumed immediately. With this project, Siemens Gamesa will operate the turbine in ‘island mode.’ Instead of feeding power to the grid in the form of electricity, the turbine will convert the electricity into hydrogen that can be stored and used when required. “Successful island-mode production will constitute a major step forward for the industry,” said GHS.
GHS is already supplying its pressurised alkaline electrolysers to hydrogen refuelling stations and power-2-x facilities in Scandinavia and will provide Siemens Gamesa with a single HyProvide A-Series electrolyser.
Supplied in containerised form, the 400-kW system is designed to accommodate the fluctuating power output of wind turbines and ensure high efficiency.
Combined with the onsite production approach, this will enable green hydrogen to be produced with the lowest possible cost. GHS said the cost of producing energy in this way is “on the way to cost parity with fossil-based hydrogen.”
The Siemens Gamesa facility is expected to start hydrogen production in January 2021.