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Determination of the Optimal Power Ratio between Electrolysis and Renewable Energy to Investigate the Effects on the Hydrogen Production Costs


Green hydrogen via renewable powered electrolysis has a high relevance in decarbonization and supply security. Achieving economically competitive hydrogen production costs is a major challenge in times of an energy price crisis. Our objective is to show the economically optimal installed capacity of electrolysers in relation to wind and solar power so swift and credible statements can be made regarding the system design. The ratio between renewable generation and electrolysis power as well as scaling effects, operating behaviour and development of costs are considered. Hydrogen production costs are calculated for four exemplary real PV and wind sites and different ratios of electrolysis to renewable power for the year 2020. The ideal ratio for PV systems is between 14% and 73% and for wind between 3.3% and 143% for low and high full load hours. The lowest hydrogen production costs are identified at 2.53 €/kg for 50 MW wind power and 72 MW electrolysis power. The results provide plant constructors the possibility to create a cost-optimized design via an optimum ratio of electrolysis to renewable capacity. Therefore, the procedures for planning and dimensioning of selected systems can be drastically simplified.

Funding source: This work was supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action [grant numbers 03SBE113D, 03SF0587C, 03EW0013A].
Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Germany

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