Provaris: Compression is low-cost delivery method for hydrogen marine transport

Compression is a viable alternative and low-cost delivery method for the regional transport of hydrogen, Australian Provaris Energy found in its latest report comparing the delivery cost of hydrogen for three hydrogen energy sectors.

Illustration of the H2Leo floating storage integrated with H2Neo 430t carrier for loading/unloading. Courtesy of Provaris

The 2023 Hydrogen Marine Transport Comparison Report, explores the delivery cost of hydrogen for three hydrogen energy vectors (compression, liquefaction and ammonia) when integrated with a variable renewable energy profile to produce hydrogen.

It identifies the energy use and losses associated with each hydrogen energy vector (compression, liquefaction and ammonia) and the significant impact they have on the total delivered cost of hydrogen. Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carriers have not been considered in the comparison as they are considered only to be a viable alternative for specific production and use cases.

One of the findings points out that energy use and losses across the entire supply chain (generation, production and delivery) associated with liquefaction and ammonia exceed 40% while compression remains below 20%. Liquefaction and ammonia suffer from high levels of renewable energy curtailment, energy use in the conversion process (20-30% loss), and energy use in the conversion back to gaseous hydrogen upon delivery (5-30% loss).

Compression was identified as the most cost-effective option for regional transport distances from 500 to 4000 nautical miles with volumes of up to 500,000 tonnes per annum (tpa) and described as the most compatible with variable renewable generation profiles as it can fully “load follow”, eliminating additional capex required for “battery and hydrogen storage” to manage variability.

Compression is a compelling solution for regional green hydrogen trade to support the REPowerEU requirement for 10Mtpa imports by 2030, Provaris said.

Furthermore, the company’s explained that its recently launched proprietary H2Leo floating storage solution is a low-cost alternative for hydrogen storage since bulk-scale hydrogen storage solution is required regardless of the hydrogen energy vector selected.

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“Importantly the report ratifies that Provaris’ proprietary H2Neo (430t) and H2Max (2,000t) compressed hydrogen carriers and H2Leo compressed storage barge provide a highly competitive marine transportation (and storage) option for hydrogen, at scale over shipping distances of up to 4,000 nautical miles”, Provaris stated.

Together with Norwegian Hydrogen AS, the company recently also completed a pre-feasibility study on hydrogen export, demonstrating the potential for low-cost delivery of green hydrogen from Norway to Europe, commencing in 2027.

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