The European Commission has awarded a consortium €5 million to demonstrate and investigate a combined wind turbine and electrolyzer system designed for operation in marine environments, consortium partner and Danish firm Orsted said in a statement on Friday.
British manufacturer ITM Power, Orsted, Spanish - German firm Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, and Element Energy from the UK received funding from the EC’s public-private partnership, The Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH2-JU).
The funding will be used to investigate the feasibility and potential of combining an offshore wind turbine directly with an electrolyzer and transporting renewable hydrogen to shore.
The consortium will “develop and test a megawatt-scale fully marinized electrolyzer in a shoreside pilot trial,” the statement read.
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy and Element Energy will provide technical and project expertise for the project, which is planned to start in 2021 and run to the end of 2024.
"ITM Power is responsible for the development of the electrolyzer system and the electrolyzer trials, while Orsted will lead the offshore deployment analysis, the feasibility study of future physical offshore electrolyzer deployments, and support ITM Power in the design of the electrolyzer system for marinization and testing," the company said.
"To realize the potential of offshore hydrogen production, there is a need for compact electrolysis systems that can withstand harsh offshore environments and have minimal maintenance requirements while still meeting cost and performance targets that will allow the production of low-cost hydrogen. The project will provide a major advance towards this aim," the company explained.
€1 equals $0.82 on Friday at 1020 GMT.
By Gulsen Cagatay