Environmental Resources Management (ERM) has received £427,000 from the UK Government to develop its project which looks at the production of green hydrogen from offshore wind.
The Dolphyn project, funded as part of the Government’s £20m Hydrogen Supply Programme, showcases a floating semi-submersible (floating platform) design with an integrated wind turbine, PEM electrolysis and desalination facilities.
The system is designed so that it can be deployed as a stand-alone or as multiple connected units which form an offshore hydrogen wind farm. A 400turbine farm (20 x 20 array) would have a capacity of 4GW, producing over 320,000 tonnes of hydrogen per annum, enough to heat 1.5 million UK homes.
“Using the power of hydrogen could help cut emissions, create jobs and make industrial processes cleaner and greener, benefitting the whole economy as we work towards net zero by 2050,” said Lord Duncan, the UK’s Minister for Climate Change.
“This innovative project from ERM will help our efforts to roll out hydrogen at scale by the 2030s – a crucial step towards the end of the UK’s contribution to global warming.”
The 10MW semi-submersible unit is able to produce up to 800 tonnes of hydrogen per year, exported back to shore via pipeline, and does not require an external power source.
“Dolphyn is a completely scalable technology that once established can be expanded across the North Sea, providing the UK with low carbon energy as we gradually reduce our dependence on fossil fuels,” said Kevin Kinsella, ERM’s Project Director.
“Our abundance of offshore wind resource, coupled with our leading oil and gas and offshore wind industry, means we are ideally placed to benefit from this new technology.”
The design has been developed to achieve the lowest predicted cost for producing hydrogen from renewables at scale in the UK.
The front end engineering work is now complete, and the project can move onto the detailed design state, with a view to making a final investment decision on a 2MW prototype facility by March 2021.
The operational start-up date of the 2MW prototype is targeted for Summer 2023. A 10MW full scale pre-commercial facility is planned to follow later in 2026.