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A Hydrogen Supply-chain Model Powering Australian Isolated Communities


This article proposes a supply chain-based green hydrogen microgrid modelling for a number of remote Australian communities. Green hydrogen can be used as an emissions-free fuel source for electricity generation in places where large-scale renewable energy production is impossible due to land availability, population, or government regulations. This research focuses on the Torres Strait Island communities in northern Australia, where the transition from diesel to renewable electricity generation is difficult due to very limited land availability on most islands. Due to geographical constraints, low population and smaller electrical load, the green hydrogen needs to be sourced from somewhere else. This research presents a green hydrogen supply chain model that leverages the land availability of one island to produce hydrogen to supply other island communities. In addition, this research presents a model of producing and transporting green hydrogen while supplying cheaper electricity to the communities at focus. The study has used a transitional scenario planning approach and the HOMER simulation platform to find the least-cost solution. Based on the results, a levelised cost of energy range of AU$0.42 and AU$0.44 was found. With the help of a green hydrogen supply chain, CO2 emissions at the selected sites could be cut by 90 %. This study can be used as a guide for small clustered communities that could not support or justify large-scale renewable generation facilities but need more opportunities to install renewable generation.

Funding source: This work was supported by the CQUniversity Destination Australia Scholarship fund and International Excellence Award.
Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: Australia

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