Discussion

The literature contains many cost analyses for hydrogen production, but the assumptions behind the analyses vary dramatically. The DOE, through its Hydrogen Program, is establishing a cost-analysis structure for comparing different hydrogen and

Table 3. Hydrogen production data for mature 10-MW plant.17 The estimated hydrogen cost of $2.48/kg has considerable uncertainty related to technology immaturity and simplistic assumptions. The H2A costs include operating, storage, transmission and distribution costs.19

Table 3. Hydrogen production data for mature 10-MW plant.17 The estimated hydrogen cost of $2.48/kg has considerable uncertainty related to technology immaturity and simplistic assumptions. The H2A costs include operating, storage, transmission and distribution costs.19

Hydrogen cost data for mature technology

Plant size (MW)

1G

Plant cost ($ million)

12.4

H2 produced (kg/yr)

1G6

Hydrogen cost ($/kg)17

2.48

H2A Hydrogen cost ($/kg)19

3.18

fuel cell technologies within a common set of assumptions. The analysis in Table 3 is a preliminary study needing additional work to fit within that framework. CPV systems are just beginning to enter the energy market, so cost uncertainties are significant compared with those of highly developed wind systems with a worldwide installed capacity approaching 50 GW. Nevertheless, these preliminary hydrogen costs are comparable with hydrogen costs from wind electrolysis, so additional cost studies are warranted. Today, wind system costs are in the $800/kW range—as are the estimated costs for highly developed CPV systems—whereas wind electrolysis does not have an opportunity for a heating boost in electrolysis efficiency. Assuming these cost analyses continue to be positive, it will be worth demonstrating this hybrid solar concentrator technology on a larger scale.

The uncertainties in this cost analysis arise principally from the early stage of technology development for solar concentrators, high-efficiency solar cells, and solid-oxide electrolysis cells. There are many positive indications that these technologies can progress and achieve their performance and cost potentials, but additional work will be needed.

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Renewable Energy Eco Friendly

Renewable Energy Eco Friendly

Renewable energy is energy that is generated from sunlight, rain, tides, geothermal heat and wind. These sources are naturally and constantly replenished, which is why they are deemed as renewable.

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