An international consortium of 40 organisations from Spain, Germany, Switzerland, Italy and Greece, led by ETRA, structure financed by Smartenergy, implementing the technology of Sunfire, with the technical expertise of Enel Green Power for the green hydrogen production and also research partners like ITE (Instituto Tecnológico de la Energía), is launching ORANGE.BAT, an ambitious initiative to incorporate green hydrogen into the ceramics industry in Europe. ORANGE.BAT can count on the strategic institutional support from the Generalitat Valenciana, the Government of the Comunitat Valenciana, which is a member of the consortium.
The lighthouse project ORANGE.BAT sets the path for the full decarbonization of an energy and CO2 intensive industry sector by replacing natural gas with green hydrogen as combustion fuel, and is fully driven by 26 industrial end-users from the Regional Ceramic Cluster of the Comunitat Valenciana, together with the two associations representing the whole sector (ASCER and ANFFECC). The project consortium submitted a funding application under the EU “Green Deal Call” to help overcome the financial challenges faced by pioneering industrial-scale projects in the current ramp-up phase of the green hydrogen economy. With sufficient funding in place, the operational start of the electrolyzer is planned by early 2024.
The partnership includes major industrial players, investment firms, research centres, institutional bodies and the cluster of off takers from the ceramics industry for the hydrogen to be produced. This enables ORANGE.BAT to cover the full value chain, from generation and storage of green hydrogen to not only the consumption of it, but also its distribution to the end-consumers. The planned large-scale pilot plant will be deployed nearby Castellón (Spain), in one of the most important ceramic industrial clusters in Europe, concentrating 95% of the ceramic industry of Spain and 33% of the CO2 emissions of the Valencian region.
“Working on this project from the initial idea and structuring ORANGE.BAT to make it an attractive investment case is a great experience, the Green Hydrogen Ecosystem really becomes reality with this project” says Christian Pho Duc, Managing Director H2 Projects at Smartenergy. “By joining forces with a great line-up of strong and experienced
partners, we will enable the decarbonization of hard to abate industries where no solution existed before.”
“For Enel Green Power, green hydrogen is the only truly sustainable solution that can support the decarbonization of hard-to-abate sectors, where electrification of end uses is not an easy solution. For that reason, we are glad to participate in the ORANGE.BAT consortium. Just through the openness and the collaboration with other partners, we will develop new services that use energy to tackle global challenges”, says Paola Brunetto, Head of Hydrogen Business Unit of Enel Green Power.
In accordance with the principles of the circular economy, ORANGE.BAT will valorise the electrolyser by-products consumed or generated in the industrial process. Not only the consumption of natural gas is subsequently replaced by Green Hydrogen avoiding CO2 emissions, but also the generated Oxygen is used to improve the KILN process and the generated heat is used for industrial and residential heating to achieve maximum energy efficiency along the full value chain.
“ETRA believes green hydrogen is set to be a very powerful tool for Europe to attain its ambitious decarbonization targets, particularly when it comes to energy-intensive industrial sectors, such as the ceramics sector. We are very glad to have gathered around ORANGE.BAT’s ambitious goals a world class partnership which covers the full value chain of green hydrogen. No doubt this is an challenging endeavour, to which we’ll be bringing our more than 30 years expertise in large scale innovation projects management -ETRA is ranked among EU’s top 1% most innovative companies-, together with all our know how and solutions on smart technologies applied to energy projects.” Says Antonio Marqués Moreno, Director of Technology and Innovation at ETRA and coordinator of ORANGE.BAT.
In the scope of the project, German cleantech company Sunfire supplies a 100 MW pressurized alkaline electrolyser. Sunfire’s alkaline electrolysis technology is the most reliable technology currently available in the market. It achieves a remarkable runtime of over 90,000 operating hours, functions at up to 30 bar working pressure without the need for downstream compression and has a proven lifespan of more than 20 years. “The challenge of the energy transition is to bring renewables to those sectors that are largely dominated by oil and gas. With our electrolysis solutions, we help our customers to develop a green hydrogen ecosystem and reduce their carbon footprint. We look forward to contributing our deep expertise and reliable technology to the ORANGE.BAT consortium. Together with the strong industrial partners and local stakeholders, we will take a significant step towards carbon-neutrality”, says Sunfire-CEO Nils Aldag.