Hydrogen

Germany’s youngest coal plant shuttered, thought about for hydrogen transformation

Only 5 years after it was commissioned, Swedish state-owned utility Vattenfall has revealed plans to transform its recently shuttered Moorburg coal-fired power plant into a green hydrogen hub powered by wind and solar.

Regardless of just commissioning the 1.6 GW Moorburg coal-fired power plant in 2015, Vattenfall announced in 2015 plans to shutter the plant and won the right to do so in a German auction for the decommissioning of hard coal plants.

From the really beginning, after taking ten years to finish building and construction and commissioning, the nails were already in the casket for the Moorburg coal-fired power plant.

Vattenfall had actually already attempted to back away from development of the task, regardless of expectations that it would be both required but also extremely effective.

By the middle of 2020, the job was losing the company cash, and the decision was made to take part in Germany’s upcoming auction for the decommissioning of coal plants.

All is not lost for Vattenfall, however, as the company announced recently strategies to examine the development of a hydrogen production center which will utilize electricity created from wind and solar energy to produce green hydrogen.

Vattenfall, along with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), Shell, and community heating utility Wärme Hamburg, revealed that they had signed a letter of intent to prepare how they might jointly produce green hydrogen at the Moorburg power plant website.

The plans would begin with the construction of a scalable electrolyser with a preliminary output of 100MW, with future advancement of the site anticipated to transform it into a “Green Energy Hub”.

The preparation phase would also check out the level to which the plant’s infrastructure might be used for the production of energy from eco-friendly sources, in addition to the required logistics chains and storage alternatives for hydrogen.

The existing infrastructure for the 1.6 GW power plant would make sure there would be lots of grid connections to supply massive hydrogen production, while the website likewise boasts port centers that might be utilized for the export of green hydrogen.

Vattenfall’s strategy to transform its defunct coal plant into a hydrogen hub also has the backing and support of the regional City of Hamburg.

Linked to both the national 380,000-volt transmission network and the 110,000-volt network of the City of Hamburg, the website is likewise located in proximity to numerous potential green hydrogen clients.

“There is no much better place in Hamburg for a scalable electrolyser of this size,” said Michael Westhagemann, Minister for Economy and Development of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg.

“Via the 380 kV connection and the connection to Brunsbüttel, we have direct access to the supply of green electricity from wind power – – and hence the possibility of really producing green hydrogen in relevant amounts.

“With this statement, a huge action will be taken towards a long-lasting decarbonisation of the port and a competitive hydrogen economy in the urbane region of Hamburg and I congratulate the partners on this positive project.”

Production of green hydrogen is anticipated to begin sometime in 2025, subject to future financial investment decisions, making it one of the biggest green hydrogen plants in Europe at the time.

“The production of fossil free hydrogen is one secret to the decarbonisation of the industry and the transportation sectors,” stated Andreas Regnell, Senior Citizen Vice President and Head of Strategic Advancement, Vattenfall.

“Vattenfall wishes to allow fossil free living within one generation and we have high ambitions to grow within renewable resource production in the markets where we run.

“In this project we can contribute with our knowledge and experience and the distinct Moorburg website that has the infrastructure that is needed for large scale production of hydrogen. We are for that reason pleased that we can support the city and the industrial location of Hamburg in executing their ambitious environment objectives.”

Vattenfall and its brand-new partners mean to get funding under the European Union “Important Projects of Common European Interest” (IPCEI) program, which is anticipated to happen in the very first quarter of 2021 with the submission of a first outline of the job.

Even More, Wärme Hamburg, the local district gas heating network, intends to expand a hydrogen network in the port within 10 years and is already working on the essential distribution facilities.

“At the Moorburg site, we will be producing green hydrogen on a big scale in partnership with experienced partners from industry, while at the exact same time developing a Green Energy hub for climate-friendly energy,” said Jens Kerstan, chairman of the supervisory boards of Wärme Hamburg GmbH and Gasnetz Hamburg GmbH as well as the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg’s minister for the environment and energy.

“This is a vibrant venture that now needs to be filled with life,” Kerstan stated. “This project will be a major lever for reaching our climate goals.

“The gas pipeline networks in the port and around Moorburg are now being broadened to accommodate hydrogen and to assist in products to industry and large organizations.

“Our hydrogen future is now taking shape, and Hamburg intends to be at the forefront here.”

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