Gas turbine to operate on 100% hydrogen in Australian project

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NovaLT 16 gas turbine[/caption]

At its recent 20th Annual Meeting in Florence, Italy, Baker Hughes, a GE company, announced the signing of an agreement with H2U, Australia’s leading Hydrogen infrastructure developer. The aggreement calls for the use of  BHGE’s NovaLT gas turbine generator technology to operate 100 percent on hydrogen for the Port Lincoln Project, a green hydrogen power plant facility in South Australia.

Working with Thyssenkrupp, H2U will construct a 30 megawatt (MW) water electrolysis plant, as well as a facility for sustainable ammonia production, near Port Lincoln in South Australia.

The project the project will integrate new hydrogen technologies, including a 15MW electrolyser plant, a distributed ammonia production facility, and a 10MW hydrogen-­fired gas turbine and a 5MW hydrogen fuel cell, which will both supply power to the grid. It is due for completion in 2020 and will be one of the first commercial plants to produce carbon dioxide-free green ammonia from intermittent renewable resources.

The green ammonia can be used as an industrial fertiliser for farmers and aquaculture operators.

H2U CEO Attilio Pigneri said, "NovaLT generators were chosen for the green hydrogen power plant facility because they could operate on 100 per cent hydrogen at all times”. “The annular combustor design and dual-shaft configuration will enable the unit to deliver a best-in-class black-start capability while still operating on 100 per cent hydrogen,” Pigneri said.

“We are impressed by the operating flexibility of the platform and its ability to operate at a low to no-load capacity, then ramp-up very quickly to full load.


“This means we can use the units to support critical loads within the Port Lincoln facility, while also contributing generation to the grid during periods of low wind or solar output. The hydrogen is also produced by the electrolysis plant on site, so we have a truly self-contained solution to firming renewable energy supply within the South Australia grid.”

Luca Maria Rossi, Chief Technology Officer of Turbomachinery Process & Solutions at BHGE said, “The collaboration with H2U is aimed at ensuring the NOx emissions of a 100% Hydrogen fired turbine can be managed within applicable limits”

“Building on our previous experience with hydrogen fuelled generation in the Fusina project, we can deliver the same world-leading capabilities and the design features of the NovaLT platform while operating on 100% hydrogen.”

“As the cost of renewable energy continues to decrease globally, hydrogen is the perfect energy vector to time-shift renewable electricity generation to meet demand.”

“South Australia is at the forefront of both renewable generation and hydrogen infrastructure developments and we are very pleased to be able to work with H2U to showcase our products in this important market.”

The Port Lincoln facility is one of 21 projects to receive funding from the South Australian Government’s Renewable Technology Fund, designed to accelerate investment in the next generation of renewable technologies. Other projects include microgrids, virtual power plants, grid-scale batteries, and pumped hydro projects.