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UK, Australia Grant £480k to Reduce Renewable Methanol Expenses Using Green Hydrogen
UK, Australia Grant £480k to Reduce Renewable Methanol Expenses Using Green Hydrogen

UK, Australia Grant £480k to Reduce Renewable Methanol Expenses Using Green Hydrogen

  • 24-May-2024 3:04 PM
  • Journalist: S. Jayavikraman

A consortium aiming to decrease renewable methanol expenses through efficient green hydrogen production has been awarded a combined £480,000 ($610,400) by the UK and Australian Governments. The project, led by HAMR Energy and Supercritical Solutions, aims to showcase the potential of high-efficiency, high-pressure green hydrogen production, which could potentially reduce renewable methanol costs by up to 20%.

In the initial phase, the consortium plans to conduct a techno-economic feasibility study focusing on integrating high-pressure hydrogen produced by UK-based Supercritical's electrolyzers into HAMR's hybrid methanol plant design. This £800,000 ($1m) project has secured £480,000 in funding from the Australia-UK Renewable Hydrogen Innovation Partnership to de-risk the concept for progression to the pilot stage. The plan includes deploying Supercritical's technology in Australia as part of a renewable methanol facility, slated to commence operations in 2026.

The consortium estimates that the electrolysis technology could potentially reduce the cost of renewable methanol by up to 20% compared to current methods, with reported efficiency reaching 42kWh/kg of hydrogen – 95% higher heating value (HHV). Supercritical's electrolysers, delivering hydrogen at 200 bar, are expected to streamline compression and storage infrastructure for methanol facilities.

Methanol, currently the largest hydrogen user, serves as a feedstock for plastics and fuel products but also emits significant amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2). Given the increasing need to decarbonize existing production processes, renewable methanol is being explored as a substitute for heavy fuel oil in shipping.

Matt Bird, CEO and co-founder of Supercritical, emphasized, “We are not just engineering electrolysers; we are crafting the keystones for the next generation of clean energy infrastructure.” Bird sees the collaboration with HAMR as a significant step toward realizing zero-emission renewable fuels as a mainstream reality.

Echoing Bird's sentiments, Alex Smith, co-founder of HAMR, highlighted the opportunity for Australia to lead in renewable methanol production. Smith noted that while HAMR has leading production projects in the region, there is a continuous need to pursue cost reduction opportunities and efficiencies. The collaboration with Supercritical presents an exciting prospect for reducing the costs associated with renewable fuel production.

HAMR Energy is a burgeoning renewable fuel enterprise committed to expediting the worldwide energy transition through the creation of projects and technologies aimed at supplanting fossil fuels. Since 2021, HAMR has solidified its status as a prominent advocate for renewable methanol projects in Australia. As an Australian-based company specializing in low-carbon fuels and chemicals, HAMR Energy is dedicated to advancing renewable methanol initiatives. HAMR Energy endeavors to aid hard-to-decarbonize sectors in their decarbonization efforts by producing carbon-neutral liquid fuels.

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