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A Techno-economic Perspective on Solar-to-Hydrogen Concepts through 2025

Grube, Thomas and Reul, Julian and Reuß, Markus and Calnan, Sonya and Monnerie, Nathalie and Schlatmann, Ludger and Sattler, Christian and Robinius, Martin and Stolten, Detlef (2020) A Techno-economic Perspective on Solar-to-Hydrogen Concepts through 2025. Sustainable Energy and Fuels, 4 (11), pp. 5818-5834. Royal Society of Chemistry. doi: 10.1039/d0se00896f. ISSN 2398-4902.

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The transition towards a renewable energy-based society is challenged by spatial and temporal imbalances of energy demand and supply. Storage properties and versatility may favor hydrogen to serve as the linking element between renewable energy generation and a variety of sector coupling options. This paper examines four alternative solar-based hydrogen production concepts based on concentrated solar (CSP) or photovoltaic (PV) power generation and solid oxide (SOE) or polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) electrolysis, namely, CSP-SOE and CSP-PEM, as well as PV-PEM concepts with (PV-PEM I) or without (PV-PEM II) power converters coupling both devices. In this paper, we analyze these concepts in terms of their techno-economic performance in order to determine the levelized cost of hydrogen (LCOH) for the target year 2025, based on different locations with different climate conditions. The analysis was carried out using a broadly applicable computer model based on an hourly resolved time-series of temperature and irradiance. The lowest LCOH was identified in the case of the CSP-SOE and CSP-PEM concepts with 14–17 €-ct per kW per h at high-irradiance locations, which clearly exceed the US Department of Energy (DOE) target of 6 $-ct per kW per h for the year 2020. Moreover, CSP-SOE also shows the highest hydrogen production volumes and, therefore, solar-to-hydrogen efficiencies. Considering the PV-PEM concepts, we found that the application of power converters for the electrical coupling of PV modules and electrolyzers does not contribute to cost reduction due to the higher related investment costs. A further system optimization is suggested regarding the implementation of short-term energy storage, which might be particularly relevant at locations with higher fluctuations in power supply.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/137984/
Document Type:Article
Title:A Techno-economic Perspective on Solar-to-Hydrogen Concepts through 2025
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Grube, ThomasForschungszentrum JülichUNSPECIFIED
Monnerie, NathalieNathalie.Monnerie (at) dlr.deUNSPECIFIED
Schlatmann, LudgerPVcomB, Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie GmbH, Berlin, GermanyUNSPECIFIED
Sattler, ChristianChristian.Sattler (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-4314-1124
Robinius, MartinForschungszentrum JülichUNSPECIFIED
Stolten, DetlefForschungszentrum JülichUNSPECIFIED
Journal or Publication Title:Sustainable Energy and Fuels
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
DOI :10.1039/d0se00896f
Page Range:pp. 5818-5834
Publisher:Royal Society of Chemistry
Keywords:hydrogen, electrolysis, PV, CSP, renewable energy, solar energy
HGF - Research field:Energy
HGF - Program:Renewable Energies
HGF - Program Themes:Solar Fuels
DLR - Research area:Energy
DLR - Program:E SW - Solar and Wind Energy
DLR - Research theme (Project):E - Solar Fuels (old)
Location: Köln-Porz
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Solar Research > Solar Chemical Engineering
Deposited By: Roeb, Dr.rer.nat. Martin
Deposited On:23 Dec 2020 13:01
Last Modified:01 Jan 2022 03:00

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