Knowledge Session: Large Scale Green Hydrogen Production

India, with its great potential for record low price green electricity generation from wind and solar, is internationally regarded as a key country to shape a global green hydrogen economy said Mr. Peter Müller-Baum from the German Engineering Federation VDMA at a recent event on large scale green hydrogen production. As Germany and many other countries will remain a net importer of energy in a global hydrogen economy, there is high interest in sourcing green hydrogen from around the world with India able to achieve the lowest cost. After having decarbonized its own economy India has all the potential to become a net exporter of green hydrogen. As per the latest figures from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) presented by Mr. Müller-Baum and Mr. Rajesh Nath, VDMA India, India may reach a levelized cost for green hydrogen (LCOH2) production of down to 1 USD/kg by the year 2030 (see figure 1). In 2050 the LCOH2 could reach 0.40-0.59 USD/kg. Such price developments motivate more than 140 member companies across the entire value chain to participate in the presented VDMA platform for hydrogen and other Power-to-X technologies.

Mr. Chirag Shah from Siemens Energy presented the latest PEM electrolyser technology available in India. The Sylizer 300 was presented as a flexible, efficient and scalable solution for large hydrogen production with one full module array able to produce 335 kg of green hydrogen per hour. “Siemens realized that decarbonization is the need of the hour, not only in India but globally,” Mr. Shah said. Siemens Energy is a spin-off by the Siemens Group with around 88,000 employees around the world. The company’s participation in the Hydrogen Council, H2Future Initiative and in the pilots such as the EnergiePark Mainz as well as the world’s largest hydrogen pilot facility in Austria for decarbonizing steel production are all testament to its long-standing commitment to the new energy business. Sector coupling of green energy and hydrogen production with consumption sectors is the key lever for the decarbonization of all end-user sectors. Being able to adapt to highly fluctuating electricity supply from renewables, the PEM technology is ready to play an increasing role with further price reductions and technological advances expected. 

Mr. Jai Prakash Soni from Thyssenkrupp gave the latest insights into projects using the company’s large scale modular Alkaline Water Electrolysis (AWE) technology for green hydrogen plants. Thyssenkrupp is a business conglomerate covering sectors such as automotive technology, steel, and marine systems with more than 100,000 employees worldwide. Thyssenkrupp has long experience in large-scale conventional and green hydrogen plant construction around the world, particularly in the fertilizer and chemicals sector. The vast experience gained over the last 50 years from working with electrolysis plants has driven the development of AWE technology, a highly reliable and efficient way to produce green hydrogen. The large modules make it possible to scale projects up to a gigawatt scale where downstream chemical value chains are completely integrated with green hydrogen. Amongst others, Mr. Prakash Soni gave insights into the advancements in the construction of an impressive multi-gigawatt alkaline electrolyser facility in the Middle East.

The presentations were followed by a lively discussion based on questions from the audience. Amongst others, potential future offtake markets, the potential for India to also export green hydrogen, perspectives of green hydrogen in the mobility sector and for storage applications were discussed. Mr. Peter Müller-Baum specifically drew attention with a presented cost curve for green hydrogen offtake markets. It showed that at 1 USD/kg, green hydrogen application becomes cost competitive to fossil fuel-based alternatives given the price for CO2 emissions is high enough. After heavy duty transport, refining and then steel production were found to be the first cost competitive market segments. With higher carbon prices hydrogen was found to become competitive also in the fertilizer manufacturing business (see figure 2).

Mr. Stefan Halusa, Director General, Indo-German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC) confirmed that substantial funding from Govt. of Germany will be made available for Indo-German Joint Venture projects with the objective to bring down the cost for green hydrogen and to boost large scale global green hydrogen production. Participants from Germany were fascinated by the presented fact, that India counts with the highest solar energy security throughout the entire year. The data presented by the Indo-German Energy Forum is based on actual generation from photovoltaic power plants all over India in the year 2020 (see figure 3). It shows that even on days with the least solar generation achieved, the generation output from solar remains extremely high and can be fully relied on at an all India level with no seasonal fluctuations at all – excellent conditions to become a global leader in large scale green cost effective green hydrogen production.

The “Indo-German Knowledge Session on Large Scale Green Hydrogen Production” was organized by the Indo-German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC) in collaboration with the Indo-German Energy Forum (IGEF) and the German Engineers Association VDMA on 14 July 2021. With around 6000 member companies, IGCC is a powerful German voice in the Indo-German business world. VDMA is the largest industrial association in Europe and focuses on networking, advocacy, technology exchange and international markets. In India, VDMA’s head office is situated in Kolkata. Dr. Nicole Glanemann, Deputy Head of the Division for Bilateral Energy Cooperation of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) and Mr. Stefan Halusa, Director General, IGCC inaugurated the session which is part of a larger series of events covering small-scale stationary hydrogen production, large-scale hydrogen production, logistics of a global hydrogen economy and green hydrogen based chemicals. The knowledge session was moderated by Mr. Tobias Winter, Director of the Indo-German Energy Forum Support Office. More than 350 participants attended the Indo-German Knowledge Session.

Recordings of all presentations are available here

Presentation slides of the speakers:

Peter Müller-Baum and Rajesh Nath (VDMA): Power-to-X for Applications.

Chirag K Shah (Siemens Energy): PEM Electrolyser technology.

Jai Prakash Soni (Thyssenkrupp): Large Scale Modular AWE Technology for Green Hydrogen Plants.

Group picture of participants of Knowledge Session on Large Scale Green Hydrogen Production

IGEF and IGCC hosted a Knowledge Session on Large Scale Green Hydrogen Production