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[en] This work focuses on the techno-economic study of massive hydrogen production by the High Temperature Electrolysis (HTE) process and also deals with the possibility of producing the steam needed in the process by using different thermal energy sources. Among several sources, those retained in this study are the biomass and domestic waste incineration units, as well as two nuclear reactors (European Pressurised water Reactor - EPR and Sodium Fast Reactor - SFR). Firstly, the technical evaluation of the steam production by each of these sources was carried out. Then, the design and modelling of the equipments composing the process, specially the electrolysers (Solid Oxides Electrolysis Cells), are presented. Finally, the hydrogen production cost for each energy sources coupled with the HTE process is calculated. Moreover, several sensibility studies were performed in order to determine the process key parameter and to evaluate the influence of the unit size effect, the electric energy cost, maintenance, the cells current density, their investment cost and their lifespan on the hydrogen production cost. Our results show that the thermal energy cost is much more influent on the hydrogen production cost than the steam temperature at the outlet stream of the thermal source. It seems also that the key parameters for this process are the electric energy cost and the c ells lifespan. The first one contributes for more than 70% of the hydrogen production cost. From several cell lifespan values, it seems that a 3 year value, rather than 1 year, could lead to a hydrogen production cost reduced on 34%. However, longer lifespan values going from 5 to 10 years would only lead to a 8% reduction on the hydrogen production cost. (author)
[en] CO2 capture and storage can ensure that stringent climate change mitigation targets are achieved more cost-effectively. However, in order to ensure a substantial role for CCS, deployment of CCS is required on a significant global scale by 2020. Currently, the CDM is the only international instrument that could provide a financial incentive for CCS in developing countries. In December 2010 it was decided that CCS could in principle be eligible under the CDM, provided a number of issues are resolved, including non-permanence, liability, monitoring and potential perverse outcomes. The latter issue relates to the concern that that CCS projects could flood the CDM market, thereby crowding out other technologies that could be considered more sustainable. This report, therefore, aims to quantify the possible impact of CCS on the CDM market, in order to assess the relevance of the CDM market objection. However, the analysis in the report is also valid for the role of CCS in other types of international support mechanisms. The first result of this study is a marginal abatement cost curve (MAC) for CCS in developing countries for 2020. Based on existing MAC studies, the IEA CCS Roadmap and an overview of ongoing and planned CCS activities, we compiled three scenarios for CCS in the power, industry and upstream sector, as shown below. The major part of the potential below $30/tCO2eq (70 - 100 MtCO2/yr) is in the natural gas processing sector. Using the MACs for the CDM market, we estimate the economic potential for CCS projects to be 4-19% of the CDM credit supply in 2020. The potential impact inclusion of CCS in the CDM may have is assessed by using several possible CER supply and demand scenarios, as well as scenarios related to market price responsiveness and the role of CDM in the post-2012 carbon market. The impact is estimated to be between $0 and $4 per tonne of CO2-eq, with three out of four scenarios indicating the lower part of this range.
[en] The incineration of biomass and waste is considered to produce water steam, which then would feed the High Temperature Electrolysis (HTE) process in order to produce hydrogen. For these energy sources, in a French context, results show that water steam production cost could be in a range of 0.02 to 0.06 euros per steam kilogram. Potentially 78 million vehicles could be fed with hydrogen coming from the steam produced by the incineration of the currently non valorized biomass and domestic waste. Furthermore, for each energy source the optimized hydrogen production cost estimation has been performed, including investment and operation costs. (authors)
[en] Offshore wind electricity generation is prospected to increase substantially in the near future at a number of locations, like in the Baltic, Irish and North Sea, and emerge at several others. The global growth of offshore wind technology is likely to be accompanied by reductions in wind park construction costs, both as a result of scaling and learning effects. Since 2005, however, significant cost increases have been observed. A recent surge in commodity prices proves to constitute one of the main drivers of these cost increases. This observation begs the question whether wind turbine manufacturers should return to the laboratory for undertaking R and D that explores the use of alternative materials and bring offshore wind energy closer to competitiveness. It is demonstrated that if one abstracts from material price fluctuations, in particular for metals such as copper and steel, turbine production plus installation cost data publicly available for a series of offshore wind park projects (realized in several European countries since the 1990's) show a cost reduction trend. Hence various other sources of cost increases, such as due to the progressively larger distances from the shore (and correspondingly greater depths at sea) at which wind parks have been (and will be) built, are outshadowed by cost reduction effects. When one expresses the overall cost development for offshore wind energy capacity as an experience curve, a learning rate is found of 3%, which reflects a mixture of economies-of-scale and learning-by-doing mechanisms. Also the impact is quantified on offshore wind power construction costs from the recent tightness in the market for turbine manufacturing and installation services: without the demand-supply response inertia at the origin of this tightness it is estimated that the learning rate would be 5%. Since these learning rates are relatively low - in comparison to those observed for other technologies, and in view of the high current capacity costs of offshore wind in comparison to onshore wind energy - a renewed focus on learning-by-searching or R and D is recommended.
[en] Among the more efficient and sustainable processes that are studied for massive hydrogen production, High Temperature steam Electrolysis seems a promising process. When operating in the autothermal mode, this process does not require a high temperature source for the electrolysis reaction but only a thermal energy source able to supply enough heat to vaporize water. Using a simplified economic model, we assess the impact of the temperature, pressure and thermal energy cost of the heat source on the process competitiveness. Results show that medium temperature thermal energy sources could be coupled to the High Temperature Electrolysis process without resulting in strong overcosts. Besides, key parameters are also identified among the electrolyzer characteristics. Relevant results indicate that R and D on electrolysis cells must continue focusing on the lifespan of these equipments, for which a target lifespan of 3 years could be established.
[en] Highlights: → Learning for pipeline construction, if available, is outshadowed by cost variability. → Pipelining is a mature technology, for which much experience has been gained. → Pipeline projects are heterogeneous with widely varying technical and cost specifics. → Pipeline cost components tend to reflect (commodity) market price developments. → Pipeline costs are strongly determined by the properties of the transported gas. -- Abstract: Gases like CH4, CO2 and H2 may play a key role in establishing a sustainable energy system: CH4 is the least carbon-intensive fossil energy resource; CO2 capture and storage can significantly reduce the climate footprint of especially fossil-based electricity generation; and the use of H2 as energy carrier could enable carbon-free automotive transportation. Yet the construction of large pipeline infrastructures usually constitutes a major and time-consuming undertaking, because of safety and environmental issues, legal and (geo)political siting arguments, technically un-trivial installation processes, and/or high investment cost requirements. In this article we focus on the latter and present an overview of both the total costs and cost components of the distribution of these three gases via pipelines. Possible intricacies and external factors that strongly influence these costs, like the choice of location and terrain, are also included in our analysis. Our distribution cost breakdown estimates are based on transportation data for CH4, which we adjust for CO2 and H2 in order to account for the specific additional characteristics of these two gases. The overall trend is that pipeline construction is no longer subject to significant cost reductions. For the purpose of designing energy and climate policy we therefore know in principle with reasonable certainty what the minimum distribution cost components of future energy systems are that rely on pipelining these gases. We describe the reasons why we observe limited learning-by-doing and explain why negligible construction cost reductions for future CH4, CO2 and H2 pipeline projects can be expected. Cost data of individual pipeline projects may strongly deviate from the global average because of national or regional effects related to the type of terrain, but also to varying costs of labor and fluctuating market prices of components like steel.