Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) and H2U Technologies, Inc. will test a new, cost-effective kind of PEM electrolyser technology, H2 Bulletin reports.
The electrolyser is developed by H2U Technologies and is called the Gramme 50. It is designed to be built in 200 kW blocks that can be stacked, producing around 80 kg/day of green hydrogen. Such an amount of hydrogen is enough to power up to 80 homes for one day in a microgrid. The blocks can be increased in number when more hydrogen is needed.
Both partners will also study the performance of new non-precious metal catalysts and find ways to reduce production costs to scale up production. The partnership is part of the utility’s Research, Development and Demonstration program to identify, develop, test, and commercialise transformational new green energy technologies.
The new PEM electrolyser will produce green hydrogen from water using renewable power. H2U Technologies said that the cost target of the new technology is half that of current PEM electrolysers which would reduce the ownership costs by 75%.
Jim Disanto, H2U Technologies board chairman, said, “Renewable electricity production is expected to grow exponentially in California in the next two decades, so the ability to store it by producing green hydrogen will be crucial.”
Janice Lin, founder and president of the Green Hydrogen Coalition, said, “The massive cost reduction potential H2U’s technology offers will further accelerate the scaled production and use of green hydrogen that’s already underway.”
SoCalGas, which serves nearly 22 million people in California, has been involved in demo projects of blending hydrogen with natural gas in its decarbonisation efforts. It also announced in March 2021 to achieve net-zero carbon targets in scopes 1, 2, and 3 emissions. It sees hydrogen as a clean, safe and reliable energy option while reaching its net-zero emissions goal.