Nel awarded purchase order for Australia’s first Power-to-Gas project
Nel Hydrogen Electrolyser, a division of Norway-headed hydrogen technology developer and supplier Nel ASA, has announced that it has received a purchase order for the first Power-to-Gas (P2G) installation in Australia from ATCO Group that will use a Proton PEM electrolyzer for a solar-to-hydrogen project being developed by the company in Western Australia (WA).
ATCO Australia Ltd, a subsidiary of Canada-headed ATCO Group, a global diversified infrastructure, logistics, and retail energy corporation is developing an industry-leading Clean Energy Innovation Hub (CEIH) based at the company’s Jandakot Operations facility in Western Australia (WA).
The CEIH incorporates the production, storage and use of hydrogen, as well as the commercial application of clean energy in micro-grid systems.
According to Nel, the contract is “strategically important” as it opens up a new P2G market and builds on the P2G experience that Nel has gained in many other parts of the world. The project is expected to be fully operational during 2019.
We are very pleased being awarded this contract to deliver our latest PEM electrolyzer technology for the first Power-to-Gas (P2G) project in Australia, we believe that this can represent an important new market for this technology. The project will show how hydrogen can play a key role in helping to decarbonize our planet. This will further highlight the P2G readiness of our electrolyzer technology gained from more than 3 500 systems sold, including more than 20 P2G projects in different parts of the world, said Jon André Løkke, CEO of Nel.
The CEIH will produce green hydrogen from electrolysis using surplus solar power and inject the hydrogen into the hydrogen micro-grid system at the Jandakot facility. Some of the experience gained from this project include optimizing hydrogen storage solutions, blending hydrogen with natural gas and using hydrogen as a direct fuel.
Approximately 1 100 solar panels will be installed at the Jandakot Operations Centre, capable of generating 300 kW of power, which is approximately two and a half times the daily power requirements of the facility. The CEIH’s design stores 400 kWh of energy in batteries with excess renewable energy utilised to power the electrolyser for the production of hydrogen.
ATCO’s CEIH project, which was started in July is being supported by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) with AU$1.5 million in funding of the estimated AU$3.3 million project – the value of the electrolyser contract has not been disclosed.
In a statement ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said that the ATCO trial could lead to hydrogen being used more widely across Australia.
Green hydrogen offers opportunities to provide carbon-free energy to cities and towns while leveraging existing natural gas infrastructure. Along with ARENA’s R&D funding round focussed on exporting hydrogen, this project will explore the opportunities for hydrogen in Australia, which could also include the development of standards for green hydrogen production, distribution and use, said Frischknecht in July when ARENA announced its R&D funding to the project.
According to ATCO Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer Pat Creaghan, the company intends to play a “leading role in the development of forward-thinking, clean energy solutions”.
Our Clean Energy Innovation Hub is at the very heart of those plans. The project has many exciting elements, but what truly sets it apart is the use of excess renewable energy, which would typically be lost to the system, to produce hydrogen, said Creaghan.