Denham to demonstrate hydrogen power

Denham
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The coastal town of Denham may host a hydrogen demonstration project as part of a new energy solution planned for the town.

The existing power supply in Denham is a combination of a Horizon Power owned and operated diesel facility, and a Synergy wind farm. Both assets are aging and in need of replacement.

Denham has a population of about 500 people, and Horizon Power is preparing to build a new power solution with solar, wind and diesel to power the town.

Denham is the gateway to the Shark Bay World Heritage Area and approximately 100 kilometres from Carnarvon and 10 hours from Perth.

Horizon Power is supporting the State Government’s Renewable Hydrogen Strategy by investigating the possibility of demonstrating the use of hydrogen as a future source of energy for the town.

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“As part of our commitment to deliver cleaner, greener energy to our regional customers, we want to investigate the potential to develop a hydrogen demonstration plant to test the suitability and capability of hydrogen as a renewable energy source for electricity generation in the future,” Horizon Power chief executive officer Stephanie Unwin said.

“Proving the reliability of such a hydrogen plant provides the opportunity to expand the plant to supply the full power requirements for the town in the future.”

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A solar farm will generate electricity, which will power an electrolyser. The electrolyser splits water into hydrogen and oxygen, with the hydrogen to be stored in a fuel cell. The fuel cell generates electricity for Denham customers.

The benefit of this “green hydrogen to electricity” supply chain is that the storage of the hydrogen ensures the availability of power 24/7. By comparison, the electricity output from a conventional solar farm is dependent on the sun shining.

Horizon Power has sought expressions of interest for the supply of the hydrogen electrolyser and fuel cell and to design and construct of the plant. If the project is determined to be viable, construction would begin in February 2021.