Tag Archives: green hydrogen

Fortescue Future Industries plots path for 300 MW green hydrogen plant in Brazil

Fortescue Future Industries (FFI), a wholly owned subsidiary of Fortescue Metals Group, and Porto do Açu Operações SA (Port of Açu), a subsidiary of Prumo Logistica SA, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to assess the opportunity to develop hydrogen-based green industrial projects in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Signed in late February, the MoU will allow for FFI and Port of Açu to conduct development studies into the feasibility of installing a green hydrogen plant at Port of Açu, Latin America’s largest privately owned deep-water port-industrial complex, FFI said.

Subject to the outcome of the studies, the project envisages construction of a 300 MW capacity green hydrogen plant at Port of Açu, with potential to produce 250,000 t/y of green ammonia.

The availability of green hydrogen and renewable power is expected to drive further sustainable industrialisation of the port, including production of green steel, fertilisers, chemicals, fuels and other sustainably manufactured industrial products, according to FFI. Anglo American already uses the port for exporting its iron ore from Minas-Rio.

The MoU also lays the groundwork for on-site solar power development projects, as well as off-shore wind development projects in the states of Rio de Janeiro and Espirito Santo.

FFI Chief Executive Officer, Julie Shuttleworth, said: “FFI is assessing renewable energy and green hydrogen opportunities globally and will lead and drive the green energy and product industry as we transition away from fossil fuels.

“I am excited to announce this MoU with Port of Açu. The opportunity to establish totally new and future large-scale industries will drive growth in the Brazilian economy. We expect the potential for new green industries at Port of Açu to substantially diversify, broaden and deepen Brazil’s already skilled workforce.”

Jose Firmo, Chief Executive Officer of the Port of Açu, said: “The Port of Açu is sailing steadfastly ahead toward the sustainable economy of the future. One of the pillars of our vision for the port’s industrialisation are today’s operational energy transition projects and the renewable energy-fuelled green industries of tomorrow.

“Açu is a gateway between the growing Brazilian economy and rapidly expanding low carbon businesses around the globe.”

Firmo added: “This will be the first green hydrogen plant in the country and will place FFI and Açu at the forefront of clean energy production and the green industrialisation of Brazil.”

Subject to the completion of feasibility studies and approvals, individual projects will be developed by FFI with ownership and project finance sources to be separately secured without recourse to Fortescue, the company said.

QEM investigates green hydrogen potential at Julia Creek project

QEM Ltd says it has commenced studies into ‘green hydrogen’ opportunities on site at its flagship 100%-owned Julia Creek vanadium and oil shale open-pit project in Queensland, Australia.

The studies will investigate the financial and regulatory requirements of the company to produce hydrogen on site at Julia Creek using a “green” solar-powered electrolyser. It is envisaged the hydrogen would initially be used as a support to the energy needs of other resources projects located in the North West Minerals Province of Queensland, but ultimately for the hydrogeneration of the company’s raw oil into transport fuels.

To assist in its assessment of capital and operating costs, the company has appointed E2C Advisory Pty Ltd. E2C previously assisted the company with the review of a processing technology using a hydrocarbon solution for oil shale extraction and have, QEM says, extensive experience in electrolysers used for hydrogen production.

QEM will commence discussions with the Queensland state government on progressing the approval process to access water resources for the potential development, focusing on securing the relevant approvals following the successful completion of the financial studies to be conducted by E2C.

Managing Director, Gavin Loyden, said the company was delighted to be working with experts who possess substantial expertise in the hydrogen field.

“The commissioning of these studies will lay the groundwork to advance our green hydrogen strategy at Julia Creek, amid increasingly buoyant market conditions and the project’s optimal location and resource profile to produce hydrogen on site,” he said.

“For example, the Queensland state government established a ministry for hydrogen in November 2020, as the state government seeks to encourage investment into the bourgeoning market. Crucially, the hydrogen strategy aligns with the broader strategic direction of Julia Creek, as QEM looks to target both the liquid fuels and renewable energy sectors.”

Julia Creek comes with a total JORC inferred resource of 2,760 Mt, and a JORC indicated area of 220 Mt that has an average vanadium oxide content of 0.3% and an oil component of 783 million barrels in the 3C category. QEM says it intends to pursue development of a standard open-pit mining method with a low strip ratio.

Fusion Fuel and Magnesitas to evaluate green hydrogen use in mining

Fusion Fuel Green has signed a memorandum of understanding with Spain-based mining company Magnesitas De Rubian SA to jointly explore the feasibility of combining green hydrogen and carbon capture technology to reduce the carbon intensity of mining operations and processing.

The longer-term ambition of the partnership is to accelerate the timeline to climate neutrality of mining activity and develop new mining solutions based on zero-emissions hydrogen, the companies said.

The proposed project would involve the installation of up to 10,000 HEVO-SOLAR units at Magnesitas’ magnesite site in Lugo, Spain, which would enable Fusion Fuel to produce 20,000 t/y of green hydrogen, the companies said. A portion of the output would be used to generate industrial heat in the Magnesitas’ natural gas/hydrogen combi furnaces, while the remainder would be combined with 125,000 t of CO2 captured by Magnesitas to produce between 38,000 and 45,000 t/y of synthetic fuels.

Joao Wahnon, Head of Business Development at Fusion Fuel, said: “We are very pleased to join with Magnesitas de Rubian to support them on their decarbonisation journey and co-develop new solutions to reduce the carbon footprint of the mining sector.

“Spain is an excellent market for our technology and an important market for us strategically, and this project is consistent with our mission of supplying the world with innovative and cost-competitive green hydrogen solutions to accelerate the energy transition.”

Eduardo Jiménez Aguirre, Managing Director of Magnesitas De Rubian, added: “The mining industry is only just beginning to think about climate risk and set emission-reduction targets, so we see this as a unique opportunity for Magnesitas de Rubian to assume a leading role in the decarbonisation effort. We are excited to be partnering with Fusion Fuel on this project and look forward to deploying their disruptive HEVO technology to generate renewable hydrogen for our operations.”

Fusion Fuel says it has created a revolutionary proprietary electrolyser solution, the HEVO, that allows it to produce hydrogen at highly competitive costs using renewable energy, resulting in zero-carbon emissions. HEVO has been specifically designed to be small, light and, critically, able to be mass produced using automated production lines, according to Fusion Fuel.

The company’s business lines include the sale of electrolyser technology to customers interested in building their own green hydrogen capacity, the development of hydrogen plants to be owned and operated by Fusion Fuel and active management of the portfolio of such hydrogen plants as assets, and the sale of green hydrogen as a commodity to end-users through long-term hydrogen purchase agreements.

AVL examining ‘green hydrogen’ potential for vanadium project

Australian Vanadium is making plans to incorporate “green hydrogen” into its mine operations in Western Australia as part of a carbon emission reduction strategy.

Vincent Algar, Managing Director of Australian Vanadium, thinks the use of green hydrogen could allow the company to reduce its carbon footprint and leverage both the economical and environmental benefits of what is a growing market.

“The green steel opportunity is one that Western Australia should particularly embrace, with the potential for many jobs to be created and a globally competitive steel industry,” he said. “This strategy can assist with environmental approvals and in attracting finance partners with an environmental, social and corporate governance focus, for AVL to bring the Australian vanadium project into production.”

The Australian vanadium project is around 40 km south-east of Meekatharra and 740 km north-east of Perth. The proposed project includes open-pit mining, crushing, milling and beneficiation at the Meekatharra site and a processing plant for final conversion to high-quality vanadium pentoxide for use in steel, specialty alloys and battery markets, to be located at a site at Tenindewa, between Mullewa and Geraldton.

The company’s strategy to incorporate hydrogen into the project includes the following areas:

  • Introducing a percentage of green hydrogen into the natural gas feed for the processing plant. The purpose of this is to reduce carbon emissions. This will be analysed fully in the company’s bankable feasibility study;
  • Offtake of ammonia from green hydrogen production for use in the final vanadium precipitation step of processing. The CSIRO is working on an ARENA (the Australian Government’s Australian Renewable Energy Agency) funded project to develop a production process that does not contribute to greenhouse gas emissions;
  • Powering mine site or haulage vehicles to move material from the mine site to the processing plant with green hydrogen. Hydrogen generation could be undertaken at the mine site and at the processing plant for refuelling. “This is a new area of development for Australia and will need to be fully assessed for its financial implications,” the company said, adding that it is keen to work with the federal and state governments and haulage companies who have a forward plan for this technology;
  • The use of green hydrogen for steel production in the ore reduction step. AVL is seeking partnerships with companies interested in this area as it would be a “noble and efficient use” for the Fe-Ti co-product that the company plans to produce, it said; and
  • Through AVL’s 100% owned subsidiary, VSUN Energy, integrating hydrogen electrolysers in plant design, combined with energy storage utilising vanadium redox flow battery technology. To support the Government of Western Australia’s plans for a green hydrogen economy, AVL has submitted a formal response to the request for expressions of interest for the Oakajee Strategic Industrial Area Renewable Energy Strategy. “Having a project located in the Mid-West region, with a variety of ways for AVL to incorporate green hydrogen means that the company is well-positioned to leverage the emerging hydrogen economy and its financial and environmental benefits,” it said.

AVL says its project is currently one of the highest-grade vanadium projects being advanced globally with 208.2 Mt at 0.74% V₂O₅, containing a high-grade zone of 87.9 Mt at 1.06% V₂O₅, reported in compliance with the JORC Code 2012.

Anglo American could use ‘green’ hydrogen power at Queensland open-pit coal mines

Anglo American has eyes on producing ‘green’ hydrogen to power the haul fleet at not only its Mogalakwena platinum group metals mine, in South Africa, but also at least one of its open-pit coal mines in Queensland, Australia, IM has learned.

The miner is part of the Macquarie Corporate Holdings Pty Limited shortlisted application for the next stage of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency’s (ARENA) A$70 million ($49 million) hydrogen funding round, a spokesperson confirmed.

BHP is also on this short list, all of which have been invited to submit a full application for ARENA’s funding for renewable hydrogen development projects in Australia.

While it is early days for the Anglo and Macquarie decarbonisation project, the spokesperson said the company’s approach in Queensland could be like the one the miner and ENGIE are developing at Mogalakwena.

The project in South Africa involves the delivery of a new Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV), set to be the world’s largest hydrogen powered mine truck, and the ‘green’ hydrogen generation solutions to power it.

The 300 t payload FCEV haul truck will be powered by a hydrogen Fuel Cell Module paired with a Williams Advanced Engineering scalable high-power modular lithium-ion battery system. This arrangement, which replaces the existing vehicle’s diesel engine, is controlled by a high voltage power distribution unit delivering more than 1,000 kWh of energy storage.

Nel Hydrogen Electrolyser AS, a subsidiary of Nel ASA, is to deliver a 3.5 MW electrolyser to ENGIE as part of the project, while Plug Power Inc is to build a first-of-its-kind full compression, storage, and dispensing system to service the new hydrogen-powered vehicle.

In Queensland, where there is no shortage of solar power to provide this ‘green’ hydrogen, Anglo has two open-pit coal mines – Dawson (pictured) and Capcoal – that could potentially benefit from this solution.

In response to the ARENA shortlisting announcement, Anglo American said: “Anglo American has pioneered the development of hydrogen power solutions for mining operations and we are working on a number of hydrogen projects around the world as part of our pathway to carbon-neutral operations by 2040.

“We welcome ARENA’s potential support and will continue to work on this particular project’s feasibility over the coming months.”

Applicants invited to the full application stage by ARENA will have until January 2021 to prepare their application, with the agency expecting to select the preferred projects by mid-2021. Successful projects are expected to reach financial close by late 2021 and commence construction in 2022.

All applicants may also be considered for financing from the Clean Energy Finance Corp (CEFC) under the CEFC’s A$300 million Advancing Hydrogen Fund.