Japanese firms team up for demo plant project which aims to showcase hydrogen energy globally
Four Japanese companies are planning to launch the world’s first Global Hydrogen Supply Chain Demonstration project which will help establish the technological development required for widespread use of hydrogen (H2) energy.
Mitsubishi Corporation, Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha, Mitsui & Co. Ltd and the Chiyoda Corporation are heading up the venture after coming together to create the Advanced Hydrogen Energy Chain Association for Technology Development, abbreviated to AHEAD.
Funding for the project is coming from Japan's National Research and Development Agency and the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organisation.
The plans will see Chiyoda, a Japanese engineering firm which specialises in industrial facilities, use its patented SPERA Hydrogen technology to construct the demonstration plant. Construction at the sites in Negara, Brunei Darussalam and at the Dehydrogenation plant in Kawasaki’s coastal region of Japan in expected to begin later this month.
A report in Gasworld, explained how the project will work. It said: "H2 will be procured in Brunei using Steam Reforming from the processed gas derived from the natural gas liquefaction plant of Brunei LNG Sdn. Bhd., and then transported by ship to Kawasaki, Japan in liquid form.
"H2 will then be extracted from the liquid and supplied to consumers. The project should be capable of supplying 210 tonnes of H2 in 2020, equivalent to filling 40,000 fuel cell vehicles.”
The H2 demo project is seen as a stepping stone for the commercialisation of projects after 2020, in line with the Japanese government’s Phase II of the ‘Strategic Road Map for Hydrogen and Fuel Cells’ which aims to realise global H2 transport and supply technologies for full-scale H2 power generation by 2030.
This particularly demonstration project is expected to become operational at the beginning of 2020.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.