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Towards Net-zero Compatible Hydrogen from Steam Reformation - Techno-economic Analysis of Process Design Options


Increased consumption of low-carbon hydrogen is prominent in the decarbonisation strategies of many jurisdictions. Yet prior studies assessing the current most prevalent production method, steam reformation of natural gas (SRNG), have not sufficiently evaluated how process design decisions affect life cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This techno-economic case study assesses cradle-to-gate emissions of hydrogen produced from SRNG with CO2 capture and storage (CCS) in British Columbia, Canada. Four process configurations with amine-based CCS using existing technology and novel process designs are evaluated. We find that cradle-to-gate GHG emission intensity ranges from 0.7 to 2.7 kgCO2e/kgH2 – significantly lower than previous studies of SRNG with CCS and similar to the range of published estimates for hydrogen produced from renewable-powered electrolysis. The levelized cost of hydrogen (LCOH) in this study (US$1.1–1.3/kgH2) is significantly lower than published estimates for renewable-powered electrolysis.

Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: United Kingdom

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