Jun 24, 2021

Protium Green Solutions targets Scotland hydrogen potential

Hydrogen
Energy
Gas
scotland
Dominic Ellis
3 min
Protium Green Solutions expands into Scotland as its CAPEX for hydrogen projects exceeds £1 billion

Protium Green Solutions (Protium), a leading UK-based green hydrogen energy services company, has expanded its UK footprint  with the opening of Protium Scotland, led by newly appointed Jon Clipsham as Chief Commercial Officer.

Following a year of "significant growth" for the London-based firm, Protium’s activity across the green hydrogen space continues to demonstrate the viability of green hydrogen for businesses accelerating their net zero strategies and its CAPEX totals more than £1 billion for projects across aviation, road transport, alcoholic manufacturing and food & beverage sectors.

Protium’s Scotland presence has been established to support its growing projects in the region, with three clients currently based in Scotland and additional projects in the pipeline. Clipsham will lead Protium’s client engagement team across all UK regions, further supporting existing clients’ decarbonisation efforts across its accelerating projects.

Clipsham has been hired to spearhead the Scotland-based office, bringing with him over 30 years’ experience having spent more than 25 years in the chemicals industry and more than five years in the green hydrogen space.

Previously he developed and led many of the projects which have driven the growth of the green hydrogen eco-system in Orkney, and he also plays an influential role in shaping Scotland’s hydrogen policies and regulation, as a Board member of the Scottish Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (SHFCA). He also holds various lecturing positions at notable Scottish universities and educational institutes (covering hydrogen and renewable energy).

Clipsham said he is fully aligned with Protium’s mission of taking action and delivering change while policy and industry catches up. "I look forward to working with the team and its clients in supporting the national energy transition and am proud to be joining forces with other experts in the field who share the same vision," he said.

Chris Jackson, CEO of Protium, said: “We can see first-hand how the appetite for green hydrogen is increasing so leveraging Jon’s expertise and technical capabilities will be instrumental in delivering the best result for our clients - I am confident we’ll be able to demonstrate how green hydrogen is an exciting solution for these organisations overhauling their decarbonisation efforts.

“As we approach the second year of the business this milestone marks an important step for Protium as our client portfolio continues to grow, government support steadily increases and as UK-brands explore sustainable energy alternatives.”

With Protium’s senior leadership team holding external decision-making roles in relevant hydrogen Associations and Institutions, together Clipsham with Jackson, and Head of Policy and Innovation, Jen Baxter, the team will play an influential role in championing hydrogen and its place in the green economy. Jackson is currently the Chairman of the UK’s Hydrogen & Fuel Cell Association and Baxter is on the Board of Industry Wales.

The Hydrogen Map lists the following projects in Scotland: Big Hit (phase 2); Acorn Aberdeenshire (Blue Hydrogen); Hydrogen Bus Project (Aberdeen); Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre; and Levenmouth Community Energy project.

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Jul 26, 2021

Form Energy receives funding power for iron-air batteries

Energy
batteries
grid
Renewables
Dominic Ellis
3 min
Startup Form Energy receives $200 million Series D financing round led by ArcelorMittal’s XCarb innovation fund to further develop iron-air batteries

Form Energy believes it has cracked the conundrum of commercialising grid storage through iron-air batteries - and some of the biggest names in industry are backing its potential.

The startup recently announced the battery chemistry of its first commercial product and a $200 million Series D financing round led by ArcelorMittal’s XCarb innovation fund. Founded in 2017, Form Energy is backed by investors Eni Next LLC, MIT’s The Engine, Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Prelude Ventures, Capricorn Investment Group and Macquarie Capital.

While solar and wind resources are the lowest marginal cost sources of electricity, the grid faces a challenge: how to manage the multi-day variability of renewable energy, even in periods of multi-day weather events, without sacrificing energy reliability or affordability.

Moreover, while Lithium-ion batteries are well suited to fast bursts of energy production, they run out of energy after just a few hours. Iron-air batteries, however, are predicted to have theoretical energy densities of more than 1,200 Wh/kg according to Renaissance of the iron-air battery (phys.org)

The active components of Form Energy's iron-air battery system are some of the cheapest, and most abundant materials: iron, water, and air. Iron-air batteries are the best solution to balance the multi-day variability of renewable energy due to their extremely low cost, safety, durability, and global scalability.

It claims its first commercial product is a rechargeable iron-air battery capable of delivering electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with conventional power plants and at less than 1/10th the cost of lithium-ion and can be optimised to store electricity for 100 hours at system costs competitive with legacy power plants.

"This product is our first step to tackling the biggest barrier to deep decarbonisation: making renewable energy available when and where it’s needed, even during multiple days of extreme weather, grid outages, or periods of low renewable generation," it states.

Mateo Jaramillo, CEO and Co-founder of Form Energy, said it conducted a broad review of available technologies and has reinvented the iron-air battery to optimise it for multi-day energy storage for the electric grid. "With this technology, we are tackling the biggest barrier to deep decarbonization: making renewable energy available when and where it’s needed, even during multiple days of extreme weather or grid outages," he said.

Form Energy and ArcelorMittal are working jointly on the development of iron materials which ArcelorMittal would non-exclusively supply for Form’s battery systems. Form Energy intends to source the iron domestically and manufacture the battery systems near where they will be sited. Form Energy’s first project is with Minnesota-based utility Great River Energy, located near the heart of the American Iron Range.

Greg Ludkovsky, Global Head of Research and Development at ArcelorMittal, believes Form Energy is at the leading edge of developments in the long-duration, grid-scale battery storage space. "The multi-day energy storage technology they have developed holds exciting potential to overcome the issue of intermittent supply of renewable energy."

Investors in Form Energy's November 2020 round included Energy Impact Partners, NGP Energy Technology Partners III, and Temasek.

In May 2020, it signed a contract with Minnesota-based utility Great River Energy to jointly deploy a 1MW / 150MWh pilot project to be located in Cambridge, MN. Great River Energy is Minnesota's second-largest electric utility and the fifth largest generation and transmission cooperative in the US.

Last week Helena and Energy Vault announced a strategic partnership to identify additional opportunities for Energy Vault’s waste remediation technologies as the company begins deployment of its energy storage system worldwide. It received new investment from Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures (SAEV) in June.

Maoneng has revealed more details of its proposed 240MWp / 480MWh Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula in Australia (click here).

The BESS represents hundreds of millions of dollars of investment that will improve electricity grid reliability and network stability by drawing energy from the grid during off-peak periods for battery storage, and dispatching energy to the grid during peak periods. 

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