The Hydrogen Stream: Penta-Ocean opens factory exclusively powered by solar, hydrogen

The Hydrogen Stream: Penta-Ocean opens factory exclusively powered by solar, hydrogen

Japan’s Penta-Ocean has opened a new factory powered by a 670 kW PV system and fuel cells. Plug Power, meanwhile, has revealed that it will provide fuel cells, hydrogen storage, and fueling infrastructure to FreezPak Logistics.

Penta-Ocean has revealed that it has completed the construction of its new factory in Muroran, Japan. The construction contractor said the new facility is 100% powered by a 670 kW rooftop PV array and hydrogen fuel cells. The hydrogen is provided either by external suppliers or via a 30 kW electrolyzer energized by excess solar. The hydrogen is stored in two 900 Nm3 tanks. The facility will mainly make temporary steel structures for offshore wind farms.

Plug Power has announced an agreement with FreezPak Logistics to provide fuel cells, hydrogen storage, and fueling infrastructure to nine additional sites and nearly 400 lift trucks. “Plug will support 11 customer sites across the US, including the three sites already in operation,” said the company. It has also teamed up with Olin Corp. to build a 15-ton-per-day hydrogen plant in St. Gabriel, Louisiana. The Louisiana plant joins Plug Power’s national network of hydrogen plants in various stages of planning and construction in New York, Tennessee, Georgia, Texas, and California.

Tokyo Institute of Technology researchers have developed a chemically stable catalyst for the synthesis of ammonia from green hydrogen, improving metal nitride complexes by introducing aluminum into the lanthanum nitride (LaN) lattice. La−Al metallic bonds (La−Al−N) prevent lanthanum atoms from reacting with moisture. “The catalytic activity did not degrade after exposure to air and moisture,” wrote the researchers in “Approach to Chemically Durable Nickel and Cobalt Lanthanum-Nitride-Based Catalysts for Ammonia Synthesis,” which was recently published in Angewandte Chemie. They aim to address rare-earth nitride complexes’ chemical sensitivity to air and moisture to improve their catalytic performance. The La-Al-N support – along with the active metals, such as nickel and cobalt (Ni, Co) – was able to produce NH3 at rates similar to that with conventional metal nitride catalysts. “Kinetic analysis and isotopic experiment showed that La−Al−N is responsible for N2 absorption and activation despite substantial Al being introduced into its lattice because the local coordination of the lattice N remained largely unchanged,” said the researchers.

Air Liquide, Chevron, LyondellBasell, and Uniper have announced plans to collaborate on a joint study that will evaluate and potentially advance the development of a hydrogen and ammonia production facility along the US Gulf Coast. 

Nikola has revealed plans to develop up to 60 hydrogen dispensing stations by 2026, by taking advantage of the US Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). “The act is expected to provide significant benefits to Nikola through production and investment tax credits, direct pay provisions, and other incentives that are expected to lower the cost of hydrogen,” said the company.

Baker Hughes has invested GBP 12 million ($13.54 million) in Levidian, valuing its business at GBP 130 million. “The cash injection will enable the further scale up of Levidian’s business, including both LOOP, Levidian’s decarbonization device, and graphene production capacities at its Cambridge headquarters,” said the company.

The Belgian government has proposed a revision of the country’s federal hydrogen strategy. The planned proposed modifications include plans to establish a national hydrogen council.

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