The Global Hydrogen Review team recently exhibited at ACHEMA – the giant trade show for the international process industries, which took place in Frankfurt, Germany. It was great to be back amongst the industry, and to catch up with friends and colleagues. Walking around the show, it was also striking to see the acceleration of the hydrogen sector. Hydrogen technology and solutions were proudly on display at many of the exhibition booths, and the burgeoning sector formed a key part of the congress agenda. Indeed, day one of ACHEMA was dedicated to the hydrogen economy, with a series of presentations covering topics including process analytics, modular automation, compression and much more, as well as a special highlight session devoted to the topic of unlocking hydrogen’s future potential.
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This session saw interesting presentations from Jürgen Nowicki, Executive Vice President and CEO of Linde Engineering, and Robert Schlögl, Director of Inorganic Chemistry, Fritz-Haber-Institut of Max-Planck-Society, as well as a heated panel discussion. A key takeaway from this session was that it is necessary to start thinking pragmatically about the hydrogen economy. While it is clear that green hydrogen will have a key role to play in the world’s future sustainability strategy, Mr Nowicki stressed that we shouldn’t focus too heavily on the colour of hydrogen at this stage. Current electrolyser technology is small scale and the process of building up the necessary infrastructure will take some time. Another hurdle for green hydrogen is that there is currently not enough renewable energy to make it viable on a large scale. As such, Mr Nowicki warned that the industry risks wasting time if it holds out for the green hydrogen revolution (and simply continues with its old – heavily CO2 emitting – processes in the meantime). Instead, he suggests that we should look to provide hydrogen – regardless of its colour – as quickly as possible, and in sufficient quantities, to enable the industry to get going. And while we are laying the foundations for the sector, we can ensure that the path forward is as green as possible into the future.
Global Hydrogen Review is an open house to the entire rainbow of hydrogen production. And just like trade shows including ACHEMA and Gastech – where you can register for a free subscription to Global Hydrogen Review at stand 15N60 – we aim to provide a platform for a wide-ranging discussion of the technological innovations that will help to drive the hydrogen sector forward, regardless of colour. This issue of Global Hydrogen Review is packed full of detailed technical articles covering a range of topics including digitalisation, pipelines, turboexpanders, decarbonisation of the maritime sector and, of course, blue and green hydrogen production. If you have a take on the advancement of the hydrogen sector, we want to hear from you too. Please reach out using the contact information on the left of this page.
And don’t forget to register for your free space at our Global Hydrogen Conference. Taking place on 16 November, this virtual conference will include a number of presentations from key industry players, as well as live Q&A sessions and networking opportunities. Turn to p. 57 and scan the QR code to secure your free space at the show.