Bloom Energy, Heliogen Partner On Low-Cost Green Hydrogen

(Credit: Bloom Energy)

by | Jul 23, 2021

(Credit: Bloom Energy)

Bloom Energy and Heliogen have announced plans to produce green hydrogen using only concentrated solar power and water, further accelerating progress toward a zero-carbon future. The companies’ first integrated solution is expected to be operational by the end of 2021.

Green hydrogen is one of the top ten technologies shaping the energy transition over the next five years, according to DNV’s Technology Progress Report released earlier this year. However, to date, producing green hydrogen through conventional solar PV or wind farms has been very costly.

Bloom Energy Servers, called Bloom Boxes, are large industrial arrays of stacked fuel cells – already used by major global companies like Caltech, FedEx, Google, the Wonderful Company, and Wal-Mart, to power their facilities.

Heliogen is a renewable energy technology company focused on eliminating the need for fossil fuels in all sectors of the economy. The company’s Sunlight Refinery aims to cost-effectively deliver near 24/7 carbon-free energy in the form of heat, power, and hydrogen fuels at scale.

The companies’ complementary technologies make green hydrogen production much more economical, on par with hydrogen produced from solar PV generation. By combining near 24/7 carbon-free power and steam, generated by Heliogen’s Sunlight Refinery solar power generation system, with Bloom Energy’s highly efficient solid oxide electrolyzer, the companies will produce green hydrogen that can replace fossil-derived fuels in commercial and industrial applications. Bloom Energy’s electrolyzers operating on steam are nearly 30 percent more efficient than low-temperature electrolyzers, such as polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) and alkaline.

Industrial companies are particularly well-suited for low-cost, large-scale hydrogen utilization given their substantial energy requirements. According to the International Energy Agency, the industrial sector is responsible for more than one-third of the world’s energy consumption, while cement production alone is the source of seven percent of global carbon emissions.

“We are always on the lookout for complementary technology to accelerate the path to zero and negative carbon, and that’s exactly what we plan to do with Heliogen,” said Venkat Venkataraman, executive vice president and chief technology officer, Bloom Energy. “By providing efficient and more cost-effective hydrogen production, we believe we can drive rapid adoption of green hydrogen to accelerate the zero-carbon energy transition in these industries.”

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