Metacon, Abwasserverband Kempten sign MoU For Green Hydrogen Production

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Metacon and the Kempten, Germany-based Abwasserverband Kempten has been inked to work together on local, off-grid green hydrogen production from biogas using wastewater as a source of methane.

On the site of AVKE, a hydrogen center will be constructed, and Metacon will provide a mid-size HHG hydrogen generator there. After being approved, this generator will start producing non-fossil hydrogen from biogas in the summer of 2023.

The HHG product line will now receive more strategic attention from Metacon, and the company also revealed plans to expand local, green hydrogen production from biogas across Europe. Shortly after, Metacon declared that the HHG 40, the first model in the HHG series, had received CE certification. With a crucial collaboration in place for a real-world demonstration of the significant German market, Metacon now takes the next crucial step in the company’s roll-out plan.

Germany has the highest biogas production density in Europe, and as a result, the highest theoretical potential for the production of green hydrogen from domestic, electricity grid-independent, local, and non-fossil sources. Germany has well over 10,000 biogas and wastewater treatment plants, with an average plant capacity of over 100 Nm3 biomethane per hour.

Due to the large market potential for producing hydrogen from biogas and the country’s high annual hydrogen consumption of more than 1.6 million tons, Metacon has chosen to create a local presence and begin pursuing strategic alliances in Germany as early as 2021.

The city of Kempten’s public agency AVKE runs a mechanical-biological group treatment facility with fermentation towers for the creation of biogas. At the moment, heat generation and the production of around 800 kW of electricity both employ biogas. In the future, biogas could be partially or completely converted into biomethane and green hydrogen.

Methane, a greenhouse gas (GHG) up to 100 times more climate warming than carbon dioxide, is transformed into high-purity green hydrogen during the reforming process made possible by Metacon’s HHG systems, which has a variety of uses, including clean fuel for cars, buses, and trucks. The procedure itself is one of the most climate-cooling and carbon-negative technologies available.

Since it may replace fossil CO2 utilized in a variety of other production processes already in place, the leftover and usable bi-product of non-fossil green carbon dioxide produced during the process can be used as an industrial raw material, which further contributes to effective GHG reduction.

The collaboration’s goal is to set up a demonstration facility and “lighthouse project” in the area of locally produced, grid-free green hydrogen. On the location of AVKE, a hydrogen center will be constructed in this context. The Kempten University of Applied Sciences’ fuel cell test lab will be used to research hydrogen uses in addition to hydrogen production in this location. Construction is now taking place in the project offices.

An HHG hydrogen generator for 24/7 continuous operation will be integrated into a professional wastewater treatment plant for the first time with the completion of this project. From the locally produced biogas, the HHG system designated for the project generates roughly 110 kg of pure hydrogen per day, or about 1/5 of the fully scaled-up HHG capacity of over 500 kg/day under construction.

A little amount of green electricity produced on-site from the biogas is used to power system components like pumps and control software. The project is expected to be ready for demonstration by the summer of 2023 as work is presently being done to get ready for the next approval process.