GKN Hydrogen, SoCalGas, and NREL Collaborate on Innovative Hydrogen Storage Solution
On June 29, 2022, Cleantech San Diego member company GKN Hydrogen and Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) announced the companies will work with the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) on an innovative green hydrogen storage solution. GKN Hydrogen’s HY2MEGA can enable safe, long duration clean energy storage without the need for compression. At scale, this combined technology could provide resilient power in case of widespread outages. It also highlights the technologies needed to reach carbon neutrality and accelerate clean fuel initiatives.
Two HY2MEGA hydrogen storage subsystems will connect to an electrolyzer and fuel cell at the ARIES facility on NREL’s Flatirons Campus near Boulder, Colorado. The electrolyzer will use renewable sources and produce green hydrogen to be stored in the HY2MEGA. The HY2MEGA stores the hydrogen in a solid state (metal hydrides), under low pressure in a compact footprint. According to GKN Hydrogen, its one of the safest ways to store hydrogen. The fuel cell will then convert the green hydrogen to produce renewable electricity. The two HY2MEGA’s will add an additional 500 kgs of hydrogen storage on site. The three-year project is set to launch at the end of this year.
“SoCalGas will leverage the large-scale hydrogen storage capabilities of GKN Hydrogen’s HY2MEGA from this project to help accelerate the commercialization and deployment of green hydrogen projects,” said Neil Navin, vice president of clean energy innovations at SoCalGas. “Ultimately, green hydrogen generation and storage will help decarbonize the energy system while assuring stability of the electrical grid to enable even higher penetrations of renewable sources of electricity.”
“This project is exactly what the ARIES platform was designed for: demonstrate the benefits of a new technology that efficiently stores energy produced from renewable electricity,” said Katherine Hurst, group manager and research scientist at NREL. “It brings together a national laboratory, a clean energy technology developer, and a large utility to work on solutions that help decarbonize the power grid. We are looking forward to working with GKN Hydrogen and SoCalGas to advance this technology.”
“Collaborations on green hydrogen projects are essential as we tackle this climate emergency,” said Frank Wolak, President and CEO of the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA). “This project will demonstrate how hydrogen storage can help reduce carbon emissions and is an innovative step towards a clean future for everyone.”
Bruno Biasiotta, Chief Executive Officer at GKN Hydrogen said, “We are really honored to be working with great organizations like NREL and SoCalGas to validate and demonstrate green hydrogen as a megawatt scale energy source. To accelerate the energy transition hydrogen cannot just be part of the discussion, it must be part of the solution. This project will demonstrate that large scale green hydrogen storage with HY2MEGA can be used to help decarbonize and accelerate the shift to cleaner fuels.”