ITM Power has announced a deal with Shell to install a large-scale electrolyser at the Wesseling refinery site at the Rheinland refinery complex in Germany.
The electrolyser, which will have a capacity of 10MW, is set to become the largest of its kind in Germany, and the world’s largest PEM electrolyser. While the project will initially be used solely for the refinery, the capacity to expand the facility to supply hydrogen is available.
ITM Power CEO Graham Cooley said, “Decarbonising hydrogen production in the chemical and refining industries is potentially a very large market. This pioneering project with Shell aims to demonstrate what can be achieved using our industrial scale electrolysers, which can use low-cost renewable energy.”
The new technology has been developed with the possibility of improving electricity grid stability in mind, as intermittent renewable energy sources become more prevalent.
With the refinery currently using 180,000 tons of hydrogen per year in the various plants, the new electrolyser will produce high quality and CO2-free hydrogen, demonstrating the technology and cost improvements through upscaling.
As Shell continues initiatives to encourage the adoption of hydrogen of transport fuel, the company’s general manager, Dr Thomas Zengerly, has discussed the increased prominence of hydrogen: “Hydrogen is a promising technology, even beyond direct use as a cleaner fuel for transport. In the future, it is also expected to play a key role in integrating energy storage and power grid balancing, thus enabling a growing share of renewables in the energy system.”