MultiPLHY project goes into implementation

Rotterdam, 23 November 2021

Soon, the world’s largest high-temperature electrolyser will produce green hydrogen for the Neste refinery in Rotterdam. Following the successful completion of planning, the consortium is now initiating the implementation phase.

The aim of the project is the installation, integration and commissioning of the world’s first high-temperature electrolyser in the order of ~ 2.4 MW. The technology will demonstrate the efficient production of green hydrogen for refinery processes at Nestes biorefinery in Rotterdam. The innovative electrolyser is manufactured and supplied by Sunfire, one of the world’s leading electrolysis companies based in Dresden.

The starting signal for the MultiPLHY project was already given at the beginning of 2020. Since then, the partners involved have finalized the conceptual design as well as the detailed construction of the plant. In the coming months, the consortium will start construction of the electrolyser on site at Neste’s biorefinery in the Netherlands. In addition to Neste and Sunfire, the MultiPLHY consortium also includes the French research institution CEA, SMS Group subsidiary Paul Wurth and the energy company ENGIE.

The project is of particular strategic importance to Neste. As Lars Peter Lindfors, Senior Vice President of Innovation, points out: “As part of our growth strategy, we are focusing on innovation, with renewable hydrogen and power-to-X being two of our key development areas. Initiatives such as the demonstration of green hydrogen production at our Rotterdam refinery as part of the MultiPLHY project allow us to continue to drive the development of new sustainable technologies.”

In the field of power-to-X technologies, the successful demonstration of the high-temperature electrolyser will mark an important milestone. The Sunfire electrolyser is based on innovative solid oxide cell (SOEC) technology, which produces green hydrogen from renewable electricity and water at operating temperatures of 850 °C. The Sunfire electrolyser is designed for the production of green hydrogen. This makes the multi-megawatt electrolyser the most efficient solution on the market – by using waste heat, the plant requires significantly less green electricity to produce one kilogram of green hydrogen than conventional electrolysis technologies.

Sunfire CEO Nils Aldag attaches particular importance to the MultiPLHY project for the refinery industry. “We are pleased that after months of planning and construction, we are now moving into the hot phase of the project. With the implementation and commissioning of our SOEC electrolyzer, we will demonstrate together with the strong MultiPLHY consortium an innovative solution that will contribute to more sustainability in the refinery industry”, says Nils Aldag.

ENGIE also sees the lighthouse project as a decisive step towards climate neutrality. Michèle Azalbert, Managing Director of ENGIE Green Hydrogen, emphasizes: “Renewable hydrogen is an essential solution for the decarbonization of industrial processes. Promoting hydrogen projects such as MultiPLHY is key to identifying potential pioneers and helping to make SOEC technology applicable and commercially viable on a large scale.”

More information about MultiPLHY can be found at multiplhy-project.eu.

The MultiPLHY project has received funding from the Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 Joint Undertaking under grant agreement No 875123. This Joint Undertaking receives support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, Hydrogen Europe and Hydrogen Europe research.

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