As more and more projects are being announced that accelerate the deployment of hydrogen, the space is innovating with solutions on how to efficiently produce, store and transport the fuel.
A new large-scale project was announced in March 2022 by the US startup Green Hydrogen International called the Hydrogen City. It represents one of the world’s few hydrogen hubs that serve the whole value chain from production, storage, utilization. It also has a plan to produce clean rocket fuel for SpaceX – Elon Musk’s space exploration company.
Hydrogen City, Texas will be powered by 60 GW of wind turbines and solar panels in Duval County in south Texas, producing more than over 3 billion kilograms of green hydrogen per year upon completion.
The project consists of a hydrogen production plant and storage facilities in the Piedras Pintas Salt Dome located in Duval County. The storages are salt caverns and are critical to the scaling-up of green hydrogen production.
Eventually, the Hydrogen city could include 50 caverns that can be created at the Piedras Pintas salt dome, providing up to 6TWh of energy storage and turning the dome into a major green hydrogen storage hub.
The produced green hydrogen will be delivered to Corpus Christi via a pipeline where it will be turned into green ammonia. There, it will have access to global transport from the Port of Christi. Another pipeline will also transport hydrogen to the Port of Brownsville where it will be converted to sustainable aviation fuel and other products. That is also where SpaceX’s Starbase is located.
“Hydrogen City is a project perfectly positioned near low-cost renewable resources, plenty of available land, salt domes, and proximity to the large energy port of Corpus Christi. It will be a world cost leader and position GHI to take advantage of the growing demand for green hydrogen,” said Green Hydrogen International board member Andy Steinhubl.
The first phase of Hydrogen city is expected to commence operations in 2026 and will consist of 2GW of production and two storage caverns. Negotiations are still ongoing with respect to the end-use options for the green hydrogen produced.
According to the company, final utilization could be sustainable rocket fuel, clean aviation fuel, green ammonia for fertilizer production, export to Asia, or as a substitute for natural gas in power plants.