Shell, Thyssenkrupp plan 200-MW green hydrogen plant in Rotterdam

Thyssenkrupp has signed a contract with Shell for its planned 200-MW Hydrogen Holland I electrolyzer plant in Rotterdam, Thyssenkrupp said Jan. 10.

Construction of the electrolyzers is planned to start in spring, with a final investment decision from Shell on the Holland Hydrogen I plant expected in 2022, and hydrogen production starting from 2024, Thyssenkrupp said in a statement.

Thyssenkrupp Uhde Chlorine Engineers will engineer, procure and fabricate the plant based on its 20-MW alkaline electrolysis module, the company said.

The facility will produce 50-60 mt/day of hydrogen once at full capacity, engineering contractor Worley said in a statement announcing early design works in 2021.

The plant will be linked to renewable electricity from the 759-MW Hollandse Kust Noord offshore windfarm, using guarantees of origin. The windfarm is due to start in 2023.

Holland Hydrogen I will be built in the Tweede Maasvlakte area of the Port of Rotterdam.

“We are looking forward to support building a major hydrogen hub in central Europe and to contribute to Europe’s transition to green energy,” Thyssenkrupp Uhde Chlorine Engineers Head of Green Hydrogen Christoph Noeres said in the statement.

“With our large-scale standard module size, we will further strengthen Shell’s hydrogen strategy,” he said. “Our partnership perfectly combines our engineering excellence with Shell’s competence of a large global energy player.”

Hydrogen from the plant will be transported by pipeline to Shell’s Energy and Chemicals Park Rotterdam, and used for industry and the transport sector, the statement said.

The Netherlands is one of the leaders in Europe for green and blue hydrogen plans, with several projects in the pipeline.

Blue hydrogen produced from fossil fuel sources coupled with carbon capture and storage is currently projected to be cheaper to produce than green hydrogen from electrolysis powered by renewables, but costs are expected to fall rapidly this decade.

S&P Global Platts assessed the cost of producing renewable hydrogen via alkaline electrolysis in Europe at Eur15.02/kg ($16.96/kg) Jan. 7 (Netherlands, including capex), based on month-ahead power prices. PEM electrolysis production was assessed at Eur17.81/kg, while blue hydrogen production by steam methane reforming (including carbon, CCS and capex) was Eur5.99/kg.

— James Burgess, Annalisa Villa