Renewable Hydrogen Storage

Hydrogen as a renewable energy is still immature.  It can play multiple important roles in the energy transition to Net Zero:

  • As a fuel for difficult-to-electrify mainly gas-fired high temperature industrial processes and some types of transportation.
  • As an energy carrier for transporting renewable energy from sources of supply to distant sources of demand.
  • As energy storage – as an alternative to batteries, for example.

The extent of future penetration of hydrogen in these roles has been, and still is, a hotly debated topic.  Factors impacting uptake include:

  • The ‘Levelised cost’ of different ‘colours’ of hydrogen when compared to other energies; particularly electricity and gas.
  • The need for a ‘levelling of the playing field’ regarding the impact of GHG emissions compared to gas, through carbon taxation.
  • The lack of a global trading marketplace for hydrogen.
  • The challenges of hydrogen storage & transportation – volume/ density, economics; health & safety and the lack of regulatory standardisation.
  • Hydrogen production capacity being currently focussed in industrial zones where oil and gas processing/ refining predominate.
  • Investments in hydrogen innovations have been skewed towards hydrogen production, followed by the demand side and lastly, transportation.  The transportation issues remain very challenging.
  • A want of clear energy policies towards hydrogen on the part of legislators.
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Net Zero commitments and the global tensions of recent years have increased attention on the hydrogen ecosystem. Blue and green hydrogen have key roles to play, but pink hydrogen from nuclear sources may also play a key role in some markets.

Evolution & Innovation Of The Hydrogen Ecosystem

The challenges around transportation have led to the development of 3 broad approaches:

Overcome the ‘gap’ between locations of supply and demand by transporting hydrogen and related products (e.g. ammonia) in bulk by pipeline and/or by sea as a gas, a liquid or dissolved in a carrier fluid. Orders for Very Large Ammonia Carrier ships (VLACs) currently exceed 25.

Establish hydrogen demand in reasonably close proximity to major supply sources. So-called ‘hydrogen valleys’ have been established in all regions of the world.

Manufacture hydrogen in small-scale (100s of kg/ day) plants close to a matched demand requirement. This could be a plasma process for making hydrogen from waste plastics, for example.

Accelerating Hydrogen’s Role In The Energy Transition To Net Zero

Do you know your hydrogen colours?

Hydrogen’s maturity as a renewable energy technology is perhaps 10 years behind photovoltaics and wind power. There’s still a lot of R&D required across the value chain, as well as the scaling of solutions to achieve competitive business case performance.

If your pain points and opportunities are related to driving innovation in the renewable hydrogen sector for a Net Zero energy transition, then please reach out to talk with us.

NovAzure is actively participating to support commercialisation of hydrogen’s role in the energy transition to net Zero, including:

Market opportunities analysis for scaling growth

Assessment & prioritisation of potential business models including value chains & manufacturing/licensing strategies

Establishing win:win partnerships with suppliers and OEM partners

Development & negotiation of commercial deals & licensing terms

Pricing licensed technologies

Structuring winning product an as-a-service offers

Sales pipeline development and implementation

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