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Thailand botanical garden demonstrates hydrogen

Nongnooch Tropical Botanical Garden

A 600-acre botanical garden and scientific research centre in Thailand is displaying hydrogen as an energy storage solution to demonstrate it is independent from the local grid and fossil fuels.

Nongnooch Tropical Botanical Garden is working in collaboration with hydrogen electrolyser manufacturer Enapter in a bid to “save the future and provide blueprints and knowledge” to “push towards zero emission energy”.

Kampon Tansacha, the owner of the garden, shared his commitment to hydrogen technology by hosting a related seminar yesterday (8th October) as part of Enapter’s ‘The Big Thing’ hydrogen technology conference.

The hands-on workshop, organised by Enapter, demonstrated how to build an entire microgrid running on solar and using a hydrogen-based energy storage.

“Green hydrogen is a valuable resource and experts anticipate it to enable the future of energy storage,” said Tanascha.

The workshop welcomed participants from all around the world who learned how to build a hydrogen energy system.

They reached a common understanding of how to use hydrogen as a safer and cleaner alternative energy source and built the solar-hydrogen energy system that was presented in Nongnooch Garden.

“This unique garden and the conservation ideals set forth by its stewards provide an ideal setting for us to illustrate the Enapter system,” said Sebastian-Justus Schmidt, Chairman of Enapter.

“We believe hydrogen is a solution to replace fossil fuels and has great implications for both the future of energy and the preservation of our planet. We are proud to be able to provide a hands-on demonstration of this to everyone who participated in the workshop.”

The world-famous Nongnooch Tropical Botanical Garden, built by Tansacha, is known for its research centre on prehistorical seed plants and was created with a clear intent to preserve tropical flowers and plants.

This article was originally published in H2 View on 9th October 2019.

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Discussions

Roger Arnold's picture
Roger Arnold on Oct 12, 2019 8:05 am GMT

Interesting bit of news. The problem with "green hydrogen" for energy storage has always been the low round-trip efficiency for energy in to energy out (assuming the energy out is electricity). I've usually seen it cited as 40%. That means it takes 2.5 kWh of renewable energy in to produe 1.0 kWh of output from hydrogen storage. Is there any information as to the efficiency of the Enaptor electrolysers that are used in this system? Also, what type of fuel cells are being used with it? Or is the stored hydrogen only being used to provide low grade heat? 

Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Oct 12, 2019 1:43 pm GMT

Roger, as is typical with "renewable" energy schemes, more questions are raised than answered. I'd be amazed if round trip efficiency was 40%, and wasn't closer to 10-15%.

If only it was possible to convert optimism into electricity.

Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Oct 15, 2019 2:18 pm GMT

I've seen more of the green hydrogen arguments coming not for energy out as electricity though, with it being mixed into or replacing gas through gas pipelines, used as vehicular fuel, etc. How much does that change the equation, in your opinion?

Roger Arnold's picture
Roger Arnold on Oct 16, 2019 5:51 am GMT

The capital and resource cost of green hydrogen make it a waste to use it merely as a replacement for natural gas. The chief virtue of hydrogen in general is that it can generate clean flexible power a reasonably high efficiency from facilities that have very low capital cost per MW of power output. Hydrogen and HFC's are the perfect backups for intermittent renewables. But "blue" hydrogen, reformed from natural gas with CCS, will remain a lot cheaper for some time to come.

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