JP

Development of a technology for large-scale storage and transportation of hydrogen

CHIYODA CORPORATION

Outline

Realization of the use of hydrogen is globally anticipated as the ultimate clean energy carrier. While the conventional technologies did not allow a large-scale storage and transportation of hydrogen, Chiyoda successfully developed a technology named SPERA Hydrogen®. With this technology, hydrogen can be handled in a liquid state at ambient temperature and pressure, which makes it possible to utilize the existing petroleum transportation and distribution infrastructure, such as tanks, oil tankers and tank lorries, lowering the capital investment for hydrogen transportation.

Although renewable energy is unstable and/or highly dependent on the weather, SPERA Hydrogen® can be produced from renewable resources for storage and transportation as hydrogen energy carrier, contributing to the increased use of renewable energy.

Chiyoda aims to establish a global hydrogen supply chain, to supply SPERA Hydrogen® for power generation, as well as distributed power generation energy supply businesses.

Description

Chiyoda successfully developed a technology named SPERA Hydrogen®, to enable safe, large-scale storage and transportation of hydrogen. Hydrogen as liquid methylcyclohexane (MCH), which is produced from toluene and hydrogen, can be safely and economically stored and transported. Both toluene and MCH are maintained in a liquid state at ambient temperatures and pressures. MCH has a low degree of risk as a chemical substance. By utilizing the OCH method with MCH, hydrogen in a liquid can be stored and transported at a compressed volume of approximately one 500th as that of hydrogen at ambient temperature and pressure.

Gaseous hydrogen is catalytically extracted from MCH through the dehydrogenaton process at the site hydrogen is supplied to hydrogen users. Toluene a by-product of the hydrogen extraction process is repeatedly recycled as a raw material for producing MCH. Chiyoda has successfully developed the proprietary dehydrogenation catalyst for MCH and has conducted technological demonstrations to make the catalyst for practical use.

Chiyoda Corporation, Mitsubishi Corporation, Mitsui & Co., Ltd., and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha established the “Advanced Hydrogen Energy Chain Association for Technology Development (AHEAD)” to carry out the Global Hydrogen Supply Chain Demonstration Project, scheduled from FY 2015 to 2020, funded by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO).

In this demonstration project, a Hydrogenation Plant was constructed in Brunei Darussalam and a Dehydrogenation Plant in the Kawasaki Coastal Area in Japan. Using the SPERA Hydrogen® technology developed by Chiyoda, hydrogen produced in Brunei is transported by sea to Japan in the form of Methylcyclohexane (MCH) at ambient temperature and pressure. Gaseous hydrogen is then separated from MCH at the Dehydrogenation Plant in Kawasaki and supplied to consumers as power generation fuel.

In May, 2020, SPERA Hydrogen® transported from Brunei Darussalam by sea successfully started to be supplied to a gas turbine in Mizue Thermal Power Plant from the Dehydrogenation Plant in TOA OIL CO., LTD.’s Keihin Refinery, located in the Kawasaki Coastal Area in Japan. Hydrogen transported by sea has been used for power generation for the first time in Japan, bringing us another step closer to the commercialization of global hydrogen supply chain.  Chiyoda aims to establish a global hydrogen supply chain, to supply this technology for power generation, as well as distributed power generation energy supply businesses.

Partner(s)

AHEAD:Mitsubishi Corporation, Mitsui & Co., Ltd., and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha

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