on November 3rd, 2023

The world is moving towards cleaner, sustainable energy, with hydrogen in the spotlight. We discuss recent advances and highlight an upcoming South Africa conference addressing safety measures for a secure hydrogen-powered future.

Amid global struggles with power supply limitations, the demand for robust and distributed energy alternatives becomes increasingly evident. The chemical element, a clean and versatile energy carrier, is gaining global recognition for its potential to transform sectors like transportation, industry, and power generation.

Furthermore, international collaboration and innovation in technology hold the potential to unlock economic opportunities and stimulate job growth worldwide.

Countries can position themselves as leaders in the emerging green energy market by investing in research, development, and the deployment of solutions. This leadership will attract investment, foster industry growth, and ensure a more prosperous and sustainable future for their populations.

But despite recent advances, concerns remain about the safety of the chemical itself and the impact of hydrogen on the environment

HYFLEXPOWER: The world’s first integrated power-to-X-to-power hydrogen gas turbine demonstrator

Siemens World First for Hydrogen Despite Snags Elsewhere

Development projects have not been without hurdles, such as the one in Scotland.

The Guardian reported this week that on Scotland’s eastern coast, in Methil near the Firth of Forth, a major transition plan has not exactly gone according to plan.

About 300 homes in Methil and nearby Buckhaven were slated to be powered by “green hydrogen” gas from 2024, offering residents free hydrogen-ready appliances under a scheme set to last at least four years.

In this endeavor, the National Grid aimed to establish the world’s first 100% hydrogen network for consumers, addressing the imperative to reduce carbon emissions from heating. The project has, however, faced delays, raising doubts about its feasibility and the future role of the chemical in home energy solutions.

On the other hand, an achievement by the German company Siemens this same week could be the game-changer that everyone has been looking for.

Game-changing Achievement

Siemens Energy achieved a groundbreaking milestone by successfully using 100 percent of the element in an industrial gas turbine in Western France. This historic accomplishment, realized at the 1MW Hyflexpower project in Saillat-sur-Vienne, marks a significant stride toward large-scale hydrogen-based energy storage initiatives.

While other manufacturers, like GE, Mitsubishi, and Kawasaki, have expressed their intentions to convert industrial gas turbines to run on pure hydrogen, Siemens Energy’s SGT-400 model became the first to turn this vision into reality.

The Hyflexpower project, developed by Engie and the German Aerospace Centre consortium, utilizes a 1MW electrolyzer powered by renewable energy to produce green hydrogen stored in a massive tank. The chemical element is then burned in the gas turbine to generate electricity.

Siemens Energy highlights the project’s ability to demonstrate the chemical’s versatility as an energy storage medium and its potential to retrofit existing gas-fired power turbines for renewable use, offering profound implications for decarbonizing energy-intensive industries.

Karim Amin, an executive board member of Siemens Energy, emphasized that the knowledge gained from this project will help advance their entire gas turbine fleet for a hydrogen-based future.

However, concerns about nitrous oxide production when burning pure hydrogen in nitrogen-rich air, which can harm human health and contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, remain. These concerns will be discussed at an upcoming conference in December.

Karim Amin, an executive board member of Siemens Energy

Risk Assessment, Safety Management, and Hazard Mitigation

The integration of the chemical into the global energy landscape brings forth critical questions regarding safety, risk assessment, and hazard mitigation.

The upcoming Hydrogen Safety & Hazardous Areas Conference, organized by the Engineering Institute of Technology’s sister company IDC Technologies, is poised to be an invaluable resource for those in the industry.

Scheduled for 4 and 5 December 2023 in Johannesburg, South Africa, this conference will provide a platform for experts, researchers, and industry professionals to share insights and best practices in hydrogen safety, risk assessment, and hazard mitigation.

Hydrogen Safety & Hazardous Areas Conference to take place 4 and 5 December 2023 in Johannesburg, South Africa

The conference agenda offers a diverse range of vital topics related to hydrogen safety and hazardous areas, including:

Risk Assessment

Experts will share knowledge about assessing and mitigating risks associated with hydrogen-based systems, ensuring the safety of hydrogen infrastructure.

Safety Management

The conference will examine the best practices in safety management, underlining the importance of robust safety protocols in hydrogen-related operations.

Hazard Mitigation

Attendees will gain insights into hazard mitigation strategies tailored to hydrogen systems, contributing to safer industrial practices.

Industry Insights

The conference program includes sessions exploring the latest advancements in hydrogen technology and renewable energy. Participants can anticipate exposure to cutting-edge technologies and research in the field.

Timeliness of the Hydrogen Conference

The potential of hydrogen as a clean energy source is undeniable. Siemens Energy’s groundbreaking project is a testament to its viability. However, as the world gets poised to embrace hydrogen, it must also be firmly committed to safety and environmental responsibility.

Blen Teshome, who will speak at the conference, emphasized: “Given hydrogen’s inherent properties, ensuring safety throughout its production, transportation, storage, and utilization is paramount.”

“Moreover, guaranteeing the safety and reliability of hydrogen energy is a prerequisite for public acceptance and a catalyst for expediting the transition to sustainable energy solutions.”

The Hydrogen Safety & Hazardous Areas Conference offers a unique opportunity to learn from experts and peers, ensuring the hydrogen revolution is robust and safe for our world.

As a keynote speaker, Siemens Sales Director Marco Rahner recently said, “Conference participants will leave with a comprehensive understanding of the opportunities in this burgeoning market, equipped with invaluable insights to drive the progress of this technology in South Africa.”

Register now to attend the Hydrogen Safety and Hazardous Areas Conference.  

Siemens Sales Director Marco Rahner will be a keynote speaker at the Hydrogen Safety & Hazardous Areas Conference

References

World First: Siemens Energy Burns 100 Percent Hydrogen In Industrial Gas Turbine

Scottish hydrogen project raises questions about its role in fuelling future homes

Hydrogen Safety & Hazardous Areas Conference – Sandton, South Africa

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