ABB introduces its energy management system ABB Ability™ OPTIMAX® to the green hydrogen market, to help reduce costs of production by enabling real-time visibility of energy consumption across operations.
Green hydrogen made via electrolysis – a process of using electricity from renewable sources to split water into hydrogen and oxygen – is widely considered a vital energy vector for achieving a low-carbon future. However, it poses significant challenges in the way of high production costs and energy-intensive processes.
According to the Green Hydrogen Catapult, a global initiative of leading energy companies, to scale up production capacity to the 50 times needed, the cost to produce green hydrogen needs to drop by 50 percent to less than $2/kg by 2026.
ABB’s OPTIMAX® supports this by serving every aspect of a hydrogen plant lifecycle, from the simulation at the design and engineering phases to real-time visualization and monitoring when in operation. The software measures bi-directional power flows and carbon dioxide emissions providing contextual data which operators can use to determine optimal energy consumption levels required to support plant processes and minimize waste.
The transparency offered by the solution can also be applied to increase the efficiency and safety of each electrolyzer module being operated within the plant, regulating each module’s speed, and ensuring it is only used as and when required.
“Scaling up green hydrogen production requires significant capital investment as well as high operating costs,” said Sleman Saliba, Global Product Manager of Energy Management for ABB Process Automation. “Nearly 70 percent of the total operating costs to run a hydrogen plant comes from the electricity needed to split the water molecule in the electrolysis process. With OPTIMAX®, for between 1-3 percent technology investment, operators can run their industrial processes in the most energy-efficient way and gain up to 20 percent reduction in electricity-based costs.”
Incorporating intra-day planning, operators can also utilize OPTIMAX® to plan ahead to trade competitively with the grid, developing a circular energy system that is based on forecasts of renewable energy availability against demand, and also considering market electricity prices.
The solution can also be used to optimize green hydrogen integration with existing hydrogen networks and any future infrastructure that may develop.
ABB’s Process Automation business is a leader in automation, electrification, and digitalization for the process and hybrid industries. We serve our customers with a broad portfolio of products, systems, and end-to-end solutions, including our # 1 distributed control system, software, and lifecycle services, industry-specific products as well as measurement and analytics, and marine offerings. As the global #2 in the market, we build on our deep domain expertise, diverse team, and global footprint, and are dedicated to helping our customers increase competitiveness, improve their return on investment and run safe, smart, and sustainable operations.
ABB is a technology leader in electrification and automation, enabling a more sustainable and resource-efficient future. The company’s solutions connect engineering know-how and software to optimize how things are manufactured, moved, powered, and operated. Building on more than 130 years of excellence, ABB’s ~105,000 employees are committed to driving innovations that accelerate industrial transformation.
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