An exploratory study on the integration of a renewable-powered electrolyser in a local energy system
Woude, M.R. van der
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The current energy transition towards a more sustainable future opens opportunities for new types of energy systems in the Netherlands. A newly proposed system utilises electrolysers to convert locally generated renewable electricity into hydrogen for local industries. This multi-energy carrier (MEC) system serves as a cross-sectional solution to increase the amount of renewable electricity sources and reduce the fossil fuel use of local industries. An explorative study is conducted to determine how a MEC system could be incorporated in the regulatory framework of the Netherlands and what would be the best design options. A literature review and interviews are conducted to determine how this system can exist within the regulatory framework of the electricity system in the Netherlands. With the results of these in consideration, the design options for both the electricity as the hydrogen part of the MEC system are evaluated. Furthermore, a case study with a techno-economic analysis is conducted upon the first pilot project, which consists of an MEC system with a microgrid. The inputs and specifications of the local renewable electricity sources (RES), the electrolysers and the hydrogen consumers are used to build three models. These give the opportunity to determine the effect of the addition of hydrogen storage and the addition of dynamic electricity prices on the self-consumption rate and the fuel costs in a MEC system. The literature review resulted in recommendations on how to incorporate the pre-determined requirements in the MEC system. The resulting recommendations are used to evaluate the proposed design options for both the structure and the market layer of the system. The advantages and disadvantages of each option are qualitatively assessed. The results of the techno-economic analysis showed that hydrogen storage capacity is maximized to fulfil all the hydrogen demand. The size of the storage capacity is dependent on the flow rate of the electrolyser and the consumption pattern of the hydrogen consumers. The addition of hydrogen storage capacity and dynamic electricity prices to the system lower the fuel cost for hydrogen consumers. Dynamic electricity prices do have a negative effect on the self-consumption rate of the system. This is caused by the low price of a European Guarantee of Origin (GoO) relative to the fluctuations of the electricity price.