Plans announced for construction of a solar powered hydrogen storage power plant in French Guiana

Solar panels. Image: James Moran

French company Hydrogène de France (HDF) Energy recently revealed plans for the French Western Guiana Power Plant, to be constructed in Saint-Laurent de Moroni, French Guiana:

Hydrogène de France (HDF Energy) has announced the launch of a world first in the history of renewable energy with the creation of its CEOG project (French Western Guiana Power Plant). The project harnessed via HDF Energy’s Renewstable® solution will deliver 100% clean, affordable and reliable power 24/7 – with no uctuations and at reduced costs – to an area of more than 10,000 households beset with energy delivery issues.

This major innovation is expected to revolutionise the energy sector and mark the start of a new era in energy delivery.The project is backed by a EUR 90 million investment from the company, private investment partners and leading banks.
HDF Energy is the world’s rst producer of a stable electricity supply based on intermittent energies. The Renewstable® solution combines a 55 MW solar farm with the world’s largest renewable energy storage solution to provide a ground-breaking 140 MWh, based on hydrogen. This is supported via secondary storage in the form of batteries.

The CEOG will address the crucial need to generate clean, reliable energy and will yield economic bene ts for French Guiana. With coordination from public agencies in French Guiana, the plant will belocated in a territory hampered by electricity production resources (currently a 20 MW de cit). The Renewstable® solution will boost the electricity grid for 20 years, by providing a reliable energy source at a lower price than the current real cost of production in Western Guiana, and without any subsidies.

The above is from HDF Energy’s press release on the project. For perhaps a more balanced view, take a look at this article from Green Tech Media:

A proposed solar-powered hydrogen storage facility has work to do to back up its big claims.

Hydrogène de France (HDF) Energy’s French Western Guiana Power Plant would couple a 55-megawatt solar farm with hydrogen storage to deliver steady, clean power at any time of day. This process is supported by secondary storage in batteries.

The €90 million ($105 million) plant would generate a fixed electrical output of 10 megawatts in the daytime and 3 megawatts during the night, adding up to 140 megawatt-hours per day.

Despite the modest size of that instantaneous output, HDF grandly claimed in its press release that the plant “is expected to revolutionize the energy sector and mark the start of a new era in energy delivery.”

Elsewhere in the release, the company hailed its project as “the world’s largest power station,” which is plainly wrong when compared to any number of power plants producing in the hundreds of megawatts or higher, not to mention existing storage facilities with greater capacity. A spokesperson clarified that the other plants don’t use hydrogen storage, altering the claim.

The big question for the system is whether it offers an efficient alternative to other forms of solar and storage.

The company will be developing its project against a backdrop of skepticism regarding hydrogen’s potential as a storage medium.


[Image: James Moran]

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