AUSTIN, Texas and OWEN SOUND, Ontario (April 27, 2022) – Green Hydrogen International (GHI) and Hydrogen Optimized, a subsidiary of Key DH Technologies Inc., have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the proposed development of a large electrolyzer manufacturing facility in Texas. The factory will produce Hydrogen Optimized’s RuggedCell™ water electrolyzers for GHI’s planned Hydrogen City project, a previously announced 60 gigawatt (GW) green hydrogen production and salt cavern storage hub to be built in South Texas.
The proposed RuggedCell™ manufacturing facility will be built out in stages, with an ultimate target of 5 GW a year of electrolyzer production. GHI intends to purchase the facility’s entire output for the first 10 years of operation to supply its Hydrogen City project. Locations being considered for the factory include the Austin, Houston, Dallas, and Corpus Christi areas.
GHI’s plan for gigawatt-scale green hydrogen production requires very large-scale water electrolysis technology. Hydrogen Optimized’s patented high-current RuggedCell™ technology was designed from first principles for large-scale hydrogen production at a significantly lower capital cost. The company is targeting individual RuggedCell™ installations of 100 MW as a stepping-stone to systems up to 400 MW. By comparison, most systems available in the market today cannot scale beyond 20 MW per unit or in many cases, 5 MW per unit. Furthermore, unlike the RuggedCell™, many of these systems use expensive iridium, which is not available at a volume required to meet multi-gigawatt annual global demand for electrolyzers. Another key advantage of the RuggedCell™ is its dynamic response to variations in electrical current levels from 0 to 100% power load in just a few seconds.
“The RuggedCell™ design is the ideal solution for large-scale hydrogen projects like Hydrogen City,” says GHI Founder and CEO Brian Maxwell. “Andrew Stuart and his team at Hydrogen Optimized have unmatched experience and technology expertise in green hydrogen production, and we’re proud to be working with them to develop the world’s largest green hydrogen production and storage hub in Texas.”
Global electrolyzer capacity is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 78%, from 0.5 GW in 2022 to 84.7 GW in 2031, according to a March 2022 report from Guidehouse Insights. This capacity is achievable realistically only through the widespread adoption of large-scale electrolysis technology. GHI anticipates that the company alone will require up to 10 GW/year of new production capacity by 2028 for its global operations.
“We look forward to working with Brian and his team at GHI in supplying Hydrogen City with RuggedCell™ electrolyzers,” says Andrew T. B. Stuart, President and CEO of Hydrogen Optimized. “We’re particularly excited to explore GHI’s plan to store green hydrogen in salt caverns, an approach that inherently recognizes the need to produce and store green hydrogen on a massive scale to unlock a region’s renewable energy potential and drive the transition to clean energy.”
“Hydrogen Optimized shares our vision of the role of gigawatt-scale production as an imperative to meet global cost and volume requirements for green hydrogen, and we’re excited to work with them on scaling up critical electrolyzer production capacity in Texas,” says GHI Board member and former McKinsey & Company senior partner Andy Steinhubl.