Reganosa will test new green hydrogen production and storage technologies in Spain through waste recovery

Reganosa testará nuevas tecnologías de producción y almacenamiento de hidrógeno verde en España mediante la valorización de residuos

Reganosa will test new technologies for the production and storage of green hydrogen (H2) in Spain. Together with the Technological Institute of Industrial Mathematics (Itmati) and within a consortium of leading companies in the sector, the Galician energy multinational will develop a digital tool to support the manufacture of H2 through the recovery of waste. This was announced this morning by the head of the Reganosa Digitization department, Rocío Vega, during a technical conference on energy transition organized by the Galician Energy Institute (Inega) in the framework of the Enerxética 2022 fair, which is being held in Silleda (Pontevedra).

With a budget of 7.89 million euros, the Zeppelin consortium will search until the end of 2024 for innovative, efficient and circular technological solutions for the production and storage of green hydrogen. In addition to Reganosa, this group is integrated by leading firms in the different stages of the H2 value chain: Naturgy, Norvento, Perseo, Redexis, Técnicas Reunidas, Repsol and Aqualia, which takes the leading role. This alliance also includes the Technological Center for Multisectoral Research (Cetim), coordinator of the project’s technical office, and seven other highly specialized research organizations Cidaut, Ciemat, EnergyLab, Imdea Energía, ITQ, the chemical engineering and environmental technology team of the University of Valladolid and the Itmati, part of the Galician Center for Mathematical Research and Technology (Citmaga).

The consortium has defined the objectives of researching a set of new green hydrogen production technologies that are alternatives to electrolysis and that promote the circular economy through the recovery of waste and by-products from different sectors: agri-food, textiles, refineries, water treatment plants… New H2 storage materials and modeling tools for the different available developed will also be developed. All this is aligned with the objective of reducing the energy, economic and environmental costs associated with the current production of hydrogen, as well as promoting a safe, efficient and clean energy.

Nowadays, only 1 % of the H2 produced in the world comes from renewable sources. The Spanish Hydrogen Roadmap aims to raise this percentage to 25 % by 2030 in the case of industry consumption. According to the aforementioned document, the green H2 will also begin to power trains, airplanes and other vehicles by that time.

Hydrogen production using Zeppelin technologies will offer Spain an annual circular green H2 generation potential of around 135,000 tons, which would be sufficient production for Spanish industry to meet the objectives set out in the Hydrogen Roadmap, or to satisfy the energy needs of the entire Spanish railway network. In addition, it will contribute to the policies and objectives in the field of the circular economy by recovering more than 99 million tons of waste and 50 million tons of municipal wastewater.

From a socioeconomic point of view, Zeppelin will not only provide new technological tools to the energy and mobility sector. It will also stimulate economic activity and qualified employment in rural areas. There, it will create new market niches, recovering waste from the primary and food sectors as a raw material for the energy sector.

  A leading consortium spanning the entire hydrogen value chain

The Zeppelin project is formed by a consortium of leading Spanish companies at a national and international level, with an important commercial and technological position throughout the hydrogen value chain. Aqualia, one of the world’s leading companies in the water sector, will develop dry reforming processes for biogas and dark fermentation excess and microbial electrolysis from WWTP sludge and wastewater. Naturgy will research the production of syngas through gasification technologies and hydrogen separation to achieve H2 suitable for use. Norvento will delve into dark fermentation technologies and hydrogen purification processes. Perseo will be the company in charge of researching wet reforming technologies for the bioethanol produced. Redexis will work on green hydrogen storage processes in the form of ammonia. Técnicas Reunidas will research the production of syngas through dry reforming of biogas and wet reforming of bioethanol, the optimization of hydrogen production in gasification, and the purification and capture of carbon dioxide. Repsol will advance in the production of biohydrogen through dark fermentation technologies and the production of syngas through bioethanol wet reforming techniques.

Reganosa, for their part, will play a dual role within the consortium. On the one hand, they will research the obtaining of new porous polymeric materials for H2 storage by means of environmentally sustainable processes. On the other hand, they will study new mathematical models associated with the technologies that their partners in this consortium implement to produce and store hydrogen. With this information, they will develop a valid tool to test, through digital twins, the processes under the Zeppelin umbrella.

This tool will provide the characteristics and locations of the optimal technologies that treat waste to produce green hydrogen, taking into account logistics, costs and energy footprint. In addition, the amount of H2 and carbon monoxide generated will be obtained, being able to track from where it has been produced. It will help, therefore, in the effective implementation of the advances that will be discovered.

Reganosa will apply to this challenge the knowledge acquired over last years in the development of high value-added digital tools for the energy sector, such as the already operational Ganeso. The role in Zeppelin is also part of the company’s strategic policy of promoting a green, digital, fair and inclusive transition.

Zeppelin has the support of relevant entities, both public and private, that consider this initiative to be of the utmost interest: the Galician Innovation Agency (Gain), the Port Authority of the Bay of Algeciras, the City Council of Algeciras, the Andalusian Energy Agency, the Spanish Biogas Association (Aebig), the Spanish Hydrogen Association (AeH2), the Business Technological Cluster of Life Sciences (Bioga), the Galician Renewable Energy Cluster (Cluergal), Gasnam, the Technological Platform for Advanced Materials and Nanomaterials (Materplat), Sedigas and the Galician Cluster of Environmental Solutions and Circular Economy (Viratec).

This project has been funded by the Center for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI), within the framework of the 2021 call of the Missions, Science and Innovation Program (Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan), and is supported by the Ministry of Science and Innovation. The aid granted to the project is financed by the European Union through the Next Generation EU fund. The project is funded by the European Union through the Next GenerationEU Fund.