Electrolyser scale-up news: May 2022

This week we explore announcements about novel electrolyser technologies (Advanced Ionics), funding announcements from Europe (ITM Power, Battolyser and Sunfire), and some gigawatt-scale expansions in manufacturing capacities (Hydrogen Optimized, Nel, Cummins and Sinopec).


AFC Energy: Power Tower & off road racing

Two updates from AFC Energy:

1. The “Power Tower”, a 10kW, ammonia-fueled, off-grid power was launched last month, with Keltbray and Acciona to deploy modular units on construction sites mid-year.

2. The launch of Extreme-H off road racing, with green methanol and ammonia likely to act as hydrogen carriers for the hydrogen-fueled racing championship.


Producing cheap, clean hydrogen: new updates

Three new updates this week:

1. A team at Durham University has shown that a massive scale-up of PEM electrolyser manufacturing capability can slash the capital costs of producing electrolyser units by up to 70%.

2. A team from the University of Campinas has proposed more focus on electrolysis of waste and seawater to produce hydrogen, avoiding direct competition between drinking water and hydrogen production.

3. A team from the Australian National University has demonstrated a new pathway forward for hydrogen production directly from sunlight by demonstrating a stable, efficient photocatalyst.


Ammonia combustion analysis: powertrains, turbines & power generation

This week we explore four updates in ammonia combustion R&D:

1. A team from the University of Cambridge has shown merchant vessels are the strongest candidates for conversion to run on ammonia powertrains, with cargo capacity losses of 4-9% able to be feasibly offset by operators.

2. Researchers at the University of Minnesota have successfully tested a thermochemical recuperation (TCR) reactor to improve the efficiency of a dual-fuel, diesel-ammonia compression ignition engine by minimising ammonia slip.

3. A global team led by Cardiff University researchers has revealed some of the inner workings of ammonia combustion in gas turbine flames.

4. A global team has produced a cradle-to-gate environmental assessment for ammonia production and ammonia-based electricity generation, suggesting that renewable and nuclear ammonia have a significant role to play in decarbonising the power sector.