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Construction begins on a world first liquid hydrogen project



Construction work has begun on a world-first project to produce liquid hydrogen from Australian brown coal. The $500m pilot project is part of the Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) which will supply a steady stream of liquid hydrogen energy to Japan via the world’s first marine transportation of liquefied hydrogen.
Construction begins on a world first liquid hydrogen project
(Visualisation of the hydrogen liquefaction and loading facility on completion. Image via Kawasaki Heavy Industries).

Hydrogen has been recognised as one of the clean fuels of the future. If the decision is made to proceed to commercial scale, the HESC has the potential to provide low emission hydrogen that can help meet Victoria’s future energy needs, as well as kick-start the emergence of a new, global export industry.

It also provides a chance for Victoria to become a world leader in the fast-growing hydrogen industry, which is expected to be worth $18 trillion by 2050.

The hydrogen liquefaction and loading facility, located at Port Hastings, is being developed by a consortium which includes Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), J-Power, Iwatani Corporation, Marubeni Corporation and AGL, with KHI and Iwatani leading the build.

The construction work, which began this week, includes building and mechanical installation including a liquefaction facility and a storage container to be completed by June 2020, to be followed by commissioning, with the target operating period being from 2020 to 2021. Kawasaki will use its know-how and experiences gained in past liquefied hydrogen and industrial plants to deliver the project safely and on time.

Commenting on the commencement of construction, Mr Shigeru Murayama, Global Chairman of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, said:

“This new facility that we are building will be the foundation of a potential, new and exciting hydrogen export industry for Australia. Delivering clean hydrogen to the world for the benefit of our environment is a goal we share deeply, and we look forward to achieving.”

Meanwhile, Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Matt Canavan said that the project symbolised new job and investment opportunities for the region:

“Australia is well placed to become a global leader in hydrogen production and this pilot project is a crucial step towards making this vision a reality. The Australian and Victorian Governments have committed $50 million each to the $500 million project, which is also supported by the Japanese Government and Japanese industry.”

The initial pilot stage of the project is expected to create up to 400 local jobs.

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Construction begins on a world first liquid hydrogen project - Time to read 3 min
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