By Akihiro Takeda
On May 26, major power plant construction company Chiyoda Corporation (Nishi Ward, Yokohama) announced that it has successfully started hydrogen power generation with a new technology being used for the first time in Japan. Hydrogen that had been processed into a liquid form was imported from overseas and then reprocessed back into a gas form to fuel a power plant in Japan. The company stated that “we have moved another step closer to the commercialization of hydrogen power generation.”
The Advanced Hydrogen Energy Chain Association for Technology Development, composed of Chiyoda Corporation and others, has started supplying hydrogen to the gas turbine at the Toa Oil’s Keihin Refinery (Kawasaki Ward, Kawasaki). Until now, special equipment was required to transport large amounts of hydrogen. The new technology allows transport at ambient temperature and pressure, solving the problem of the high transport cost associated with hydrogen power generation.
At a liquid natural gas (LNG) plant in Brunei, hydrogen is removed from the excess gas produced there and combined with toluene to liquefy before being shipped to the plant in Kawasaki. At the Kawasaki facility, the hydrogen and toluene are separated again and the hydrogen is used to fuel the gas turbine. The separated toluene is then shipped back to Brunei to be used again.
Japan’s Basic Hydrogen Strategy aims to commercialize hydrogen-fueled power generation in 2030.
A Chiyoda representative said, “Hydrogen is a clean energy that doesn’t produce CO2. We hope to contribute to achieving a low-carbon and post-carbon society.”