April 16 (Renewables Now) - The consortium behind the EUR-18-million (USD 22.3m) H2FUTURE research project has initiated construction work on a 6-MW pilot plant for the production of "green" hydrogen, it was announced today.
German engineering group Siemens AG (ETR:SIE) said in a statement it has developed the world's current largest proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolyser module for the research facility, which is being built at the premises of Austrian steel-based technology and capital goods group Voestalpine AG (VIE:VOE) in Linz, Austria. There, the plant will enable testing of potential applications for carbon dioxide (CO2)-free hydrogen in the various process stages of steel production.
The project was launched in early 2017, with EUR 12 million in funding from the European Commission (EC). Siemens said today that foundations for the plant in Linz are now in place and that construction work for the hall is currently underway. The facility is expected to enter into service within a year and the start of the two-year test programme is scheduled for the spring of 2019.
Apart from Siemens and Voestalpine, the H2FUTURE project consortium also includes Austrian electricity company Verbund AG (VIE:VER) and Austrian Power Grid. K1-MET and ECN are acting as research partners.
Verbund’s role is to supply renewable power for the project and to develop grid-relevant services. The plant will be capable of producing 1,200 cubic metres of CO2-free hydrogen an hour. The objective is to achieve a record output efficiency of 80% in converting electricity into hydrogen, Siemens said.
(EUR 1.0 = USD 1.239)