Integrated hydrogen gas turbine demonstrator
Dec 15 2022
The HYFLEXPOWER consortium and Smurfit Kappa have announced the successful completion of the first stage of the HYFLEXPOWER project, an innovative research project on renewable energy. This project, located at the Smurfit Kappa Saillat paper mill in France, is the first in the world to introduce an integrated hydrogen gas turbine demonstrator. The project involves significant collaboration across several industries, academic bodies and research institutes, including ENGIE Solutions, Siemens Energy, Centrax, Arttic, German Aerospace Center (DLR), and four European universities.
The hydrogen pilot was successfully trialled last month with a mix of 30% hydrogen and 70% natural gas. The aim of the HYFLEXPOWER project is to demonstrate that renewable energy can be converted to hydrogen and used as a flexible means of storing energy. In 2023, trials will continue to increase the hydrogen ratio up to 100%.
Garrett Quinn, Chief Sustainability Officer of Smurfit Kappa, commented on the project: "We are focused on reducing our emissions with the best available technology today, but equally this announcement demonstrates how we are focused on looking beyond 2030 and trialing new technology, such as hydrogen, today. This project will allow us and our partners to understand the technical feasibility of using hydrogen with a lot of our existing energy infrastructure. This is an exciting project for us, and industry in general, as we progress on our journey towards net zero."
The project was inspired by the European Commission's "Hydrogen Strategy for a Climate-Neutral Europe" report, which outlines the essential role that hydrogen will play within the European Green Deal carbon neutrality and energy transition initiative. Commenting on the end of the initial testing phase, Gaël Carayon, Director of Subsidiaries at ENGIE Solutions, said: "Ambitious projects like this one require taking partnerships to the next level and being united in a joint mission to make decarbonisation a reality. Hydrogen will play a crucial role in the interaction between renewables and electricity storage and generation. ENGIE Solutions is proud to participate in this unique project."
The project, first announced in 2020, involves significant funding by the EC, with two-thirds of the €15.2 million investment coming from the EU's Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. The next trials for the HYFLEXPOWER project are scheduled for Spring 2023.
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