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Interaction of Hydrogen Infrastructures with other Sector Coupling Options Towards a Zero-emission Energy System in Germany


The flexible coupling of sectors in the energy system, for example via battery electric vehicles, electric heating or electric fuel production, can contribute significantly to the integration of variable renewable electricity generation. For the implementation of the energy system transformation, however, there are numerous options for the design of sector coupling, each of which is accompanied by different infrastructure requirements. This paper presents the extension of the REMix energy system modelling framework to include the gas sector and its application for investigating the cost-optimal design of sector coupling in Germany's energy system. Considering an integrated optimisation of all relevant technologies in their capacities and hourly use, a path to a climate-neutral system in 2050 is analysed. We show that the different options for flexible sector coupling are all needed and perform different functions. Even though flexible electrolytic production of hydrogen takes on a very dominant role in 2050, it does not displace other technologies. Hydrogen also plays a central role in the seasonal balancing of generation and demand. Thus, large-scale underground storage is part of the optimal system in addition to a hydrogen transport network. These results provide valuable guidance for the implementation of the energy system transformation in Germany.

Related subjects: Policy & Socio-Economics
Countries: Germany

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