hydrogen
Aerial photo of liquefaction loading faciilty at the Port of Hastings, Victoria. Image credit: ABB

Energy major ABB has announced a pilot to deliver automation, electrification and instrumentation support for the landmark HESC project to safely and efficiently produce clean hydrogen in Australia and transport it to Japan.

The project is considered to be one of the world's first efforts to commercialise liquid hydrogen production and transportation.

The pilot will test the production of hydrogen gas through brown coal gasification, liquefaction of hydrogen gas, storage and loading onto the world’s first specialised carrier for transport across the Asia-Pacific.

The landmark HESC pilot project has the potential to create AU$2 billion in exports nationally. The Australian government has described the pilot project as a ‘crucial step’ towards Australia becoming an international leader in hydrogen production, with the Australian and Victorian governments pledging AU$50 million ($34 million) each to the AU$500 million ($343 million) HESC pilot project.

Construction of the small-scale pilot facilities at the Port of Hastings commenced in 2019 and the pilot phase will operate for approximately one year from 2020. ABB has been awarded orders in both Australia and Japan, winning an electrification and instrumentation contract in Australia and an automation contract in Japan from Kawasaki Heavy Industries.

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“ABB is excited to collaborate on this world-first pilot to commercialize technology for liquefying and transporting hydrogen from Australia and deliver clean energy to Japan, while also reducing emissions,” said Peter Terwiesch, President of ABB’s Industrial Automation business. “As a technology leader, our high-quality products and solutions are matched by our global experience and an innovative spirit.”

Kevin Kosisko, managing director, ABB Energy Industries, added: “Worldwide, we are leveraging our competency in the energy industries to support our customers in major projects with potential to generate greener and more sustainable energy sources for tomorrow’s world.”