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EU funds Ørsted pilot project to produce green hydrogen with offshore wind

January 08, 2021

S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):

A consortium involving Ørsted A/S has been awarded €5 million in EU funding to investigate the offshore production of green hydrogen.

The Danish wind giant, together with partners ITM Power PLC, Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy SA and Element Energy Ltd., received support from the European Commission’s Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking to demonstrate a combined wind turbine and electrolyzer system designed for operation in marine environments.

A megawatt-scale electrolyzer will be tested in a shoreside pilot project named Oyster, coordinated by Element Energy. An Ørsted spokesperson said the group had not yet settled on a site and would decide on the location in the coming months. The fact that the funds are coming from the EU does not preclude the U.K., the spokesman said: “The U.K. is an option. It will be one of the North Sea countries.”

To realize the potential of offshore hydrogen production, compact electrolysis systems are needed that can withstand harsh offshore environments and have minimal maintenance requirements while still meeting cost and performance targets. “The project will provide a major advance towards this aim,” the consortium said Jan. 8.

The electrolyzer system will be integrated with a single offshore wind turbine and will be able to follow the turbine’s production profile. It will also integrate desalination and water treatment processes, making it possible to use seawater as a feedstock for the electrolysis process.

A different green hydrogen project named Gigastack — also involving Ørsted, Element Energy and ITM Power — was last year awarded funding of £7.5 million by the U.K.’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

[Camilla Naschert]

More ($): Ørsted consortium gets EU funding for offshore hydrogen project

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