In this weeks newsletter, we have bad news for the hydrogen environment in Vestland, Norway: The politicians have decided that it will be no zero-emission requirements for the high-speed passenger ferries by 2024, as previously decided. We can also read about hydrogen production plants, hydrogen-powered cabins at construction sites and hydrogen trains. Lastly, ZeroAvia has reported a world’s first flight with a hydrogen-powered commercial plane.
No zero-emission requirement for high-speed passenger ferries
The politicians of the County municipality of Vestland decided in December 2019 that the four high-speed passenger ferries between Bergen and Indre Sogn, and Bergen and Nordfjord should be emission-free by 2024. This week the same politicians decided not to apply a zero-emission requirement from 2024 after all, but instead the tender with the best combination between cost and emissions will win. This will most likely result in hybrid diesel/battery systems to be the winners, thus halting the developement of hydrogen systems. Ship designer LMG Marin is not happy about the announcement, and says the decision will decelerate the ongoing development on zero-emission vessels. They are part of a consortium that have been developing a zero-emission hydrogen soulution for these connections, called Zeff, and estimate that they so far have spent 21 million NOK on the consept, that now might be a waste.
Both politicians and industry have previously thought that hydrogen was a suited solution for these routes and that this could contribute to the technology development in Norway. Instead, the politicians want to announce a pilot contract for one zero-emission vessel, that will be tested outside ordinary operation.
Large scale hydrogen production plant in Germany
Siemens has revealed plans to build one of the largest hydrogen production plants in Germany. The plant will be located in the Wundsiedel Energy Park in the north of Bavaria, with an initial capacity to produce more than 900 tonnes of hydrogen per year in the first phase.
Groundbreaking is scheduled for the end of 2020 and commissioning at the end of 2021. The plant will run on renewable energy and produce green hydrogen by PEM electrolysis. The hydrogen will be filled into gas cylinders for local distribution and shipped by truck to local and regional end customers. The plant will also provide flexibility for the grid. A public hydrogen filling station for trucks and buses may be added later at the same location.
Green hydrogen production plant in France
Lyhfe Hydrogen has begun the construction of a renewable hydrogen production plant in Bouin, France. The production is estimated to start in May 2021, producing green hydrogen from the Bouin wind turbines by electrolysis. The investment of the project is 6 million euros, and the plant has a production capacity of 300 kilograms per day, with plans to double and triple the capacity in the nearest future. This gives a yearly capacity of 110 tonnes, and the production plant will be a small plant compared to the 900 tonnes a day plant in Germany.
Hydrogen-powered cabins to cut emissions at construction sites
UK-based HS2 has trialled solar and hydrogen-powered welfare cabins at some of their construction sites to cut carbon emissions. The EasyCabin EcoSmart ZERO product may be the first solar and hydrogen-powered welfare unit of its kind.
Solar energy and hydrogen is combined to reduce emissions. Data were gathered from 16 deployed cabins over a 21-week period. The hydrogen technology replaces traditional diesel power systems, resulting in savings of 112 tonnes of carbon during the period.
Hydrogen trains in Britain and the Netherlands
A hydrogen-powered train has travelled on Britain’s rail network for the first time. The prototype Hydroflex travelled a 25-mile round trip, reaching speeds up to 50 mph. The aim is to carry paying passengers by end of 2021.
In March, Alstom completed tests for their Corodia iLint hydrogen train in the Netherlands. The report was released this week, and states that Alstom’s train has met the four objectives of the test frame: authorisation to run on the Dutch railway network, fully zero emission, perfectly fitting the commercial service, and quick and easy refuelling.
World’s first hydrogen-powered commercial aircraft takes to skies
Hydrogen-powered aircrafts were on the agenda last week. Just hours after we published our news update, ZeroAvia could report that their hydrogen-powered six-seater Piper M-class plane had completed a successful 20 minutes flight above Bedfordshire. ZeroAvia aims to make hydrogen planes available commercially in three years.
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