Stanford Convenes Hydrogen Focus Group

ANNOUNCEMENT: California’s Stanford University held a two-day workshop this week to launch a new effort aimed at advancing hydrogen “for stable, long-term, low-carbon energy storage.”  The Stanford Hydrogen Focus Group intends to support research, serve as a technical resource, and disseminate information via workshops and symposia.  Its overall goal is to create “a global community of academicians, industrialists, thought leaders and government officials” that can “explore and clarify the technical, scalable, commercial, techno-economic, and regulatory aspects of a hydrogen economy.”  The initiative is being “fostered” by the Precourt Institute for Energy.  It will be carried forward by Stanford Energy Corporate Affiliates, the Stanford Natural Gas Initiative, and the University’s Center for Interface Science and Catalysis.

I was invited to represent the Ammonia Energy Association at the workshop. At the request of the workshop’s organizers, I presented ammonia’s credentials to serve as a hydrogen transport and storage medium. Steve Szymanski, Director of Business Development for Nel Hydrogen and Secretary of the Ammonia Energy Association, gave the lunchtime keynote talk on the first day.

The workshop’s attendance was notable for the prevalence of international heavyweights.  Europe was represented by industrial gas company Air Liquide; energy companies Equinor, Shell, and Total (the latter an AEA member); and motor company BMW.  Japan was represented by chemical engineering firm Chiyoda; industrial gas company Iwatani; shipbuilder Kawasaki Heavy Industries; motor company Toyota; and the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO).

Workshop organizers plan to “produce a white paper based on the workshop discussions that will lay the groundwork for future research.”

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