Wärtsilä has today (July 14) revealed a pioneering test programme for pure hydrogen engines in hopes that it can enable fully decarbonised energy systems.
This will see the testing of the technology group’s thermal balancing engines to use pure hydrogen with the expectation that the engine and power plant concept will be capable of running on 100% hydrogen by 2025.
The project, being tested in Vaasa, Finland, will assess Wärtsilä’s existing 31 gas engine technology to find the optimum parameters for running on hydrogen.
Read more: Wärtsilä gas engines to burn 100% hydrogen
Wärtsilä has suggests that the ability to modify existing engines to utilise hydrogen and hydrogen-based fuels when they become widely available is crucial to achieving global decarbonisation goals.
For this, the internal combustion engine is a key technology in enabling the growth of renewables today, providing the flexibility required to support the intermittent generation of wind and solar.
Being able to modify engines in the future to utilise carbon neutral fuels, such as green hydrogen and green hydrogen-based fuels, means that utilities can invest confidently now to enable the 100% renewable system required by the middle of the century.
Håkan Agnevall, CEO of Wärtsilä, said, “This is a milestone moment in the worldwide energy transition. Global societies will have to invest billions into the infrastructure needed to develop green hydrogen, but that investment is reliant upon having market-ready engines which can run on the fuel once it is readily available.
“Our modelling shows that a significant amount of thermal balancing is required by the middle of this century to achieve the transition to 100% renewable energy.
“By developing engines today which can run on hydrogen tomorrow, we are future-proofing energy systems to become 100% renewable by 2050.”
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