Plug Power Inc, a leading provider of turnkey hydrogen solutions for the global green hydrogen economy, and Fortescue Future Industries Pty Ltd (FFI), recently signed a letter of intent for a 50-50 joint venture to build a gigafactory in Queensland, Australia. As part of the agreement, the two organisations intend to build a two gigawatt factory to produce large-scale proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolysers, with the ability to expand into fuel cell systems and other hydrogen-related refuelling and storage infrastructure in the future.
Plug Power will supply the electrolyser and fuel cell technology and FFI will contribute advanced manufacturing capabilities. FFI will be the primary customer of the products manufactured by the joint venture, enabling its ambitions in decarbonising its iron ore mining operations with stationary power and mobility applications running on green hydrogen.
“We need solar panels, wind towers, and electrolysers in such scale that we need to produce them where we use them – including in Australia. We have enough solar and wind in Australia to power many countries of the world. Working together with Plug Power, we can create this future,” said Julie Shuttleworth, CEO of Fortescue Future Industries.
Under the agreement, FFI will also purchase 250 MW of Plug Power’s electrolyser solutions, used to create hydrogen and oxygen from water, for its Australian projects. Plug Power will supply these from its gigafactory in Rochester, NY. Delivery is planned for the second half of 2022.
“Australia and New Zealand will be a big market opportunity for our green hydrogen ecosystem of electrolysers, fuel cells, and green hydrogen,” said Plug Power President and CEO Andy Marsh. “This year, we will do megawatts of deployment in these markets, and gigawatts in the coming years.”
“Hydrogen fuel cells and electrolyzers have a great future as the world reduces emissions. Green energy, green hydrogen, green ammonia and fuel cells powered by green hydrogen are all essential to support a planet with a high standard of living that will last forever,” added Shuttleworth.
Both companies will fund the joint venture equally and will have equal representation on the board of the joint venture. The above commitments are subject to the parties’ mutual agreement on the relevant terms and conditions.