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CLEARGEN DEMO Report Summary

Project ID: 303458
Funded under: FP7-JTI
Country: Denmark

Periodic Report Summary 4 - CLEARGEN DEMO (The Integration and demonstration of Large Stationary Fuel Cell Systems for Distributed Generation)

Project Context and Objectives:
The CLEARgen Demo project addresses the topic “SP1-JTI-FCH.2011.3.6 aiming on Field demonstration of large stationary fuel cell systems for distributed generation and other relevant commercial or industrial applications”. Certain industries, such as chemical production or petroleum refining have been identified as producing large quantities of by-product hydrogen that can be used to produce clean, load-following power on a distributed basis, reducing reliance on fossil fuels. While the chemical production industry generally acknowledges the potential value of stationary fuel cell applications, the lack of multiple megawatt-scale European reference sites is a significant barrier to widespread adoption.
The CLEARgen Demo proposal aims to address this need.
The main objectives of the CLEARgen Demo Project are:
1) The development and construction of a large scale fuel cell system for conversion of by-product hydrogen, purpose-built for the European market,
2) The validation of the technical and economic readiness of the fuel cell system power generation at the megawatt scale,
3) The field demonstration and deployment of fuel cell megawatt scale power system at a European chemical production plant.

Project Results:
The site of the initial project was selected in Hungary with University of Budapest and Linde Gas as partners. The withdrawal of Linde Gas from the project forced the others members of the consortium to look for a new site for the project.

A new opportunity of site implementation was brought forward by Hydrogène de France (HDF) which works due to the valuation of hydrogen produced by a chemical plant in France, at Ambès near Bordeaux in France.
To value the electricity produced by the fuel cell, the project needed a feed-in tariff. A complete study was carried out by HDF to explain the interest for French government to put in place a feed-in tariff for electricity produced by hydrogen fuel cell.

Despite intensive efforts, the project has failed to obtain a feed-in tariff in Bordeaux and HDF has looked for another way to value electricity. An appropriate tariff is possible in overseas territory like Martinique where HDF has a partnership with SARA (limited liability company of Caribbean refinery) to developed projects about hydrogen. HDF proposed to relocate the project to the refinery of Fort de France and SARA accepts to host the project and to invest the amount necessary to close the project budget. The change was subject of a new project amendment, approved by the Programme Office in December 2016.
The main objectives of the 4th period (July 2016 – March 2017) were to:
- obtain FCH-JU’s approval of the project amendment for moving the project site to the limited company of the Antilles refinery, abbreviated SARA, on Martinique;
- extend the project period with 6 months (the project now lasting 98 months);
- to start the preparatory work for the manufacturing and installation of the ClearGen™ system.
- obtain a feed-in tariff for the electricity produced
- Ensure investors for Aquipac.

Potential Impact:
It is expected that the CLEARgen Demo field demonstration will show that large stationary PEM fuel cell systems for distributed power generation are environmentally friendly and commercially relevant for chemical process industrial applications where alternatively excess hydrogen today is vented. Certain chemical productions and petroleum refineries are today producing large quantities of by-product hydrogen that can be used to produce clean, load-following electrical power on a distributed basis, reducing reliance on fossil fuels. The aim of the project CLEARgen Demo remains the implementation of a large fuel cell in respect to EU specifications in the site of SARA Martinique and the demonstration of the viability of such technology, the decrease of operation costs and the increase of stacks lifetime.
Demonstrating the CLEARgen Demo shows that the technology now is ready for a broader deployment in the connection with the relevant industries and the setup will serve as a showcase for other relevant industries and will break the ground for further installations in Europe.
The conversion of vented hydrogen into useful electrical power and heat will lower the environmental load on the planet. The demonstration site was chosen for the ability to provide a strong reference and show case in order to convince other European industries with hydrogen as a by-product that large fuel cell power systems will be a green solution to get value from vented hydrogen.

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