Europe has just launched a new benchmark in the production of green hydrogen for industrial use. And it is in the heart of Ciudad Real. More specifically, in Puertollano, a town with just under 50,000 inhabitants. During an institutional act headed by the king and the presidents of Castilla-La Mancha and Iberdrola, the electricity company yesterday cut the inaugural ribbon of its new green hydrogen plant, with the capacity to generate up to 3,000 tons each year.
“It is the largest installation of this type for industrial use in Europe and also the largest plant currently in operation in the world,” the electricity company specifies. Its global investment reaches 150 million euros. In addition to the hydrogen facilities, it incorporates an integrated photovoltaic solar plant with 100 MW of power and an estimated annual production of 156,000 MWh. The firm calculates that each year it will avoid the emission of about 78,000 tons of carbon dioxide.
For the generation of hydrogen, the Puertollano plant incorporates one of the largest electrolysis systems in the world and will be supplied with renewable energy supplied by the solar plant. The multinational electricity company specifies that the installation will have bifacial panels and a lithium-ion battery system with a storage capacity of 20 MWh.
The renewable hydrogen that comes out of Iberdrola’s new facilities will be used at Grupo Fertiberia’s ammonia factory in Puertollano, which will allow it to reduce its consumption of natural gas by 10%. In the future, Iberdrola also wants to take advantage of the residual heat generated by the hydrogen plant during electrolysis to establish “a 100% green heat network” in the municipality itself and reduce its dependence on fossil fuels for heating.
“This facility could make Spain a benchmark in the production and development of this new energy vector, which would decisively contribute to the decarbonisation of sectors that are difficult to electrify, such as fertilizers, the high-temperature industry and heavy transport,” he notes.
“The start-up of the Puertollano plant represents the first phase of the plan that foresees the development by Iberdrola of 40,000 tons per year of green hydrogen for Fertiberia’s consumption by 2027, with a potential investment of 1,800 million euros”.
The plant has 11 tanks with an individual capacity of 133 cubic meters that allow it to store some 6,000 kilos of green hydrogen. The tanks, 23.5 meters high and with a diameter of 2.8, are made of steel. The one in Puertollano is not the first initiative carried out by green hydrogen promoted by Iberdrola. Just a few months ago, it began producing at its plant in the Barcelona Free Zone to supply clean energy to metropolitan buses and has already submitted more than fifty proposals to the EU’s Next Generation programme.
Images | Iberdrola