Hydrogen made from renewable energy will be used to help power an Australian town for the first time as part of a landmark trial along the country’s west coast. Hydrogen Industry Leaders explores the aim of the pilot project.
Horizon Power, the state-owned regional electricity utility in Western Australia, has revealed its pilot project that will convert electricity from a solar plant to make green hydrogen in Denham, 820 kilometres north of Perth.
The hydrogen will be used to power a fuel cell capable of generating enough electricity to supply about 100 homes, or a quarter of the town’s demand.
Under the trial, the hydrogen fuel cell will be plugged into Denham’s existing standalone power system, which includes a battery, a wind turbine, and a conventional diesel-fired plant.
When it is fully up and running, Horizon has said the hydrogen project is expected to cut the use of diesel in the town by 140,000 litres a year.
Western Australia Energy Minister Bill Johnston said the trial was a breakthrough for the use of hydrogen as a fuel that could backup renewable energy when the wind was not blowing, or the sun was not shining.