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Hydrexia and HyGear partner on low-cost hydrogen distribution in Europe; solid state storage and delivery

Australia-based hydrogen solid state storage and distribution company Hydrexia has entered an agreement with Netherlands-based HyGear, supplier of industrial gases and on-site generation systems, to supply hydrogen in Europe. The hydrogen will be produced by HyGear’s small-scale Hy.GEN steam methane reforming (SMR) facilities located across Europe.

The agreement between the two companies allows for development and supply of a complete hydrogen generation, storage and distribution system with a lower cost product for customers. Hydrexia is entering the European market in partnership with HyGear with the intention of becoming a distributor of the lowest cost hydrogen in Europe.

Hydrexia solid-state storage distribution trailers deliver hydrogen to smaller customers situated around the Hy.GEN hub, which would otherwise not be good candidates for onsite generation. Ground-mounted, solid-state storage systems (magnesium hydrides) provide buffer and backup storage for the Hy.Gen backup operations, at about half the CAPEX of traditional hydrogen tube trailers.

They also provide reduced OPEX costs, operating at low pressure and being directly refilled by the onsite Hy.GEN system, eliminating the need for trucked in high pressure hydrogen to replenish backup storage.

Hydrexia storage systems. Hydrexia’s solid-state ground storage product is a scalable skid-based solution designed for industrial and energy customer sites that currently use multi-cylinder packs or tube trailers for hydrogen supply or backup. Metal hydride storage vessels are packaged together into a variety of configurations to optimize storage capacity and flow rates to satisfy customer requirements. The balance of plant system provides the required thermal management, interfaces and controls for an autonomous hydrogen storage and delivery system.

According to Hydrexia, its systems are about half the capital cost ($/kg-H2) of compressed hydrogen storage. The Hydrexia products can provide up to four times the storage density of compressed hydrogen, which reduces footprint and simplifies siting. The systems operate at low pressure (up to 10bar), which provides superior safety. Hydrexia says that its ground storage products will be available for commercial deliveries starting Q1 2016.

Mobile Delivery Products. The solid-state trailer product is optimized for high hydrogen storage density and low delivery cost. The trailer design can deliver up to 900 kg of H2—more than three times the capacity of a standard bulk tube trailer used by industrial gas companies today.

At the filling station, the trailer is filled with hydrogen at low pressure (up to 10 bar). At the customer site, the trailer is connected to Hydrexia’s balance of plant system, which supplies the necessary thermal management and controls for autonomous hydrogen delivery to the customer site.

Hydrexia says that the solid-state trailers are about half the capital cost ($/kg-H2) of conventional bulk tube trailers and can reduce the total cost of hydrogen delivery by 30-40%. Standard tube trailers require compressors at the filling terminal, which are expensive and require significant maintenance, whereas Hydrexia’s solid-state solutions operate at near ambient pressure and require little infrastructure at the filling station. Hydrexia’s mobile delivery products will be available for commercial deliveries starting Q2 2016.

HyGear is showing confidence in Hydrexia’s technology in partnering with us to expand their business. With their Hy.GEN SMR and our storage and distribution systems, our end customers will be able to enjoy the lowest possible cost hydrogen supply system.

—Hydrexia CEO Erik Hansen

HyGear. HyGear offers small scale on-site hydrogen generation systems ranging from 5 Nm3/h up to 100 Nm3/h. This makes them highly suitable to be installed at industrial sites and hydrogen filling stations.

HyGear uses proprietary reforming technology to generate a hydrogen rich stream from natural gas. To ensure long lifetime, high system efficiency and avoid catalyst deactivation, the natural gas is stripped from sulphur before it is led into the reformer.

HyGear uses vacuum pressure swing adsorption technology—more energy- and cost-efficient than traditional gas separation systems. The PSA consists of four parallel active vessels, enabling a continuous cleaning process. In the PSA, the hydrogen is separated from other gaseous species under elevated pressure by using differences in adsorption properties.

>By re-using the waste gases and waste heat of the process, the energy efficiency of the Hy.GEN is optimized. No external fuel gases are needed for the reform reaction and steam generation. The off-gas from the PSA is used as input for the burner that provides heat for the reforming reaction. The residual heat is used for generating steam which is mixed with natural gas for the steam reforming process.

The system includes gas desulphurisation and water purification and can therefore be connected directly to the natural gas and feed water lines. Other required connections are electricity for controls and auxiliaries, hydrogen and nitrogen for system start-up and compressed air for valves.


Bob Wallace

2015 is setting all time temperature records and these folks want us to use more fossil fuels?

What do they not understand about shooting oneself in one's foot?


The same lower cost solid H2 storage technology could probably be used with H2 produced from clean electricity?

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