Engie EPS Successfully Demonstrates Its Hydrogen Energy Storage System in Greece

published: 2020-11-05 18:30 | editor: | category: News

Engie EPS, an energy storage subsidiary of French energy conglomerate Engie, announced on October 19 that it has completed a pilot project that shows the advantages of its hydrogen-based energy storage system. Currently supporting a microgrid located at the Greek village of Agkistro, the project is developed under an EU-funded research program known as “Remote Area Energy Supply with Multiple Options for Integrated Hydrogen-Based Technologies” or REMOTE.

Engie EPS describes its proprietary technology as a form of “power-to-power” energy storage. The system has an electrolysis vessel that uses electricity to produce hydrogen (i.e., “power to gas”) and a fuel cell that converts the same hydrogen back to electricity (i.e., “gas to power”).

The Agkistro project uses renewable electricity generated from a nearby hydroelectric dam. According to Engie EPS, the energy storage system is extremely efficient in the power-to-gas process. At the same time, its net capacity reaches up to 500kWh, which is enough to meet the demand during the peak load period and serve as a backup power source. The Agkistro project is now in operation following the successful completion of system installation and the site acceptance test.

Carlaalberto Guglielminotti, CEO and general manager of Engie EPS, said that the Agkistro project is the latest in a series of pilot projects that have proven the feasibility of the company’s technology across four continents. Guglielminotti further asserted that hydrogen energy storage is “the only available option” when it comes to supporting microgrids that are powered exclusively by renewable energy.

Looking ahead, Engie EPS intends to expand its presence in the utility market by offering key technologies and services related to system integration.

The EU is sponsoring the development of pilot projects that demonstrate the capability of hydrogen energy storage for isolated microgrids and off-grid applications

The Agkistro project is one of the four projects under the REMOTE program that is backed by the EU and will run for four years starting in 2018. Situated in northern Greece and near the border with Bulgaria, the Agkistro project affirms that the integration of renewable energy and energy storage can result in a steady supply of electricity for isolated microgrids or off-grid applications.

Another pilot project has been set up on Froan Island in Norway. Here, hydrogen energy storage is combined with solar PV and wind power to form an isolated microgrid that supplies electricity to local homes and fishery facilities. The island therefore no longer requires new underwater power cables.

The remaining two pilot projects under the REMOTE program are respectively located at the Italian villages of Ginostra and Ambornetti. Italian energy company Enel Green Power is responsible for developing the Ginostra project with the aim of demonstrating the integration of hydrogen energy storage with solar PV. As for the Ambronetti project, the renewable electricity that feeds into the storage system comes from solar PV and biomass generation.

The “hybrid approach” made possible by Engie’s technology can address both short-term and long-term demand as the hydrogen energy storage system can provide power on a daily or seasonal basis.

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