High potential solutions to major challenges
Offshore renewable energy production has many challenges. Its variability over time is one of them, as it can destabilise a grid and lead to strong variations in the price of electricity. In order to achieve a use free of this variability, it is necessary to store the electrical energy produced. For long-term storage, the production of hydrogen is the most relevant solution today. This element can be reused to produce electricity and support the network, but also for other industrial uses. Its use in maritime and land transport is also envisaged to meet the need for decarbonised energy. The production of hydrogen could be a good complement to the operation of wind farms. The specific challenges of offshore renewable energies are threefold: transposition of land-based solutions to the sea, development of technological building blocks adapted to the specificities of the sea and demonstration of the economic viability of these new solutions. The risks inherent in hydrogen storage must also be perfectly mastered to allow large-scale use.
Studying the feasibility of producing hydrogen from wind energy
Although the production of hydrogen or derived products (ammonia, methanol) from the energy of offshore wind farms is an option that is gaining ground in the minds of those involved in the French sector, it seems necessary to assess its feasibility. France Energies Marines, its members and partners are working on this issue by conducting a technical, economic, regulatory and environmental analysis to identify the most favourable configurations for deployment in the Channel, Atlantic, Mediterranean and West Indies (OPHARM project). In order to carry out this study, a state of the art of hydrogen production, storage and transport technologies is underway. This technical and economic information will be accompanied by a risk assessment and a life cycle analysis. On this basis, a decision support tool will be developed to study prospective cases. At the end of this project, a hydrogen roadmap for the offshore wind industry will be proposed.
Photo credit: Photocreo Bednarek / AdobeStock
Offshore production of hydrogen analysis and roadmap
Farm Optimisation R&D Manager
ORE research project manager