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Together with regional partners, the industrial company VDL is developing an electrolysis device that should make green hydrogen an affordable alternative to fossil fuels, reports the Regional Development Company of Brabant in the Netherlands (BOM).
Editorial office / Eindhoven

Industry still accounts for about a third of Dutch natural gas consumption. For high-temperature processes, electrification is simply not an option. Green hydrogen is a sustainable alternative, according to Marius Ponten, Director of Corporate Innovation at VDL. And not just for energy-intensive production processes. “You can also use hydrogen as a feedstock for the production of plastics and fertilisers.

At the moment, the production costs of hydrogen are too high. Not only does it use a lot of electricity, but the electrolysers are also still expensive. “As a manufacturing party, we think we can make a difference here,” says Ponten. “We want to develop an electrolyser that is cheaper and more efficient, so that the cost price of hydrogen can be reduced.” The first thing to look at is the cost of components and assembly. Together with the Eindhoven Institute for Renewable Energy Systems (EIRES) from TU/e and the scientific research institute DIFFER, the best usable technology is also being looked at. And VDL works together with chemical company and hydrogen producer Nobian because of that company’s market knowledge. The province of Noord-Brabant has already granted the consortium a subsidy for an extensive feasibility study.

Ponten sees not only a sustainability impact from the project but also economic opportunities for Brabant. The expected European demand for hydrogen in 2030 is twenty times the current worldwide production capacity. “So there is plenty of room in this market, and Brabant, with its high-tech and manufacturing industry, is excellently positioned to play a distinctive role worldwide.”

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