Hydrogen is a versatile energy carrier and storage medium that may be employed in a variety of applications. It may be produced using different processes. In this work, process simulation is used to obtain material and energy balances for each process investigated, as well as for the evaluation of capital and maintenance costs. Process simulation outcomes are then used to estimate three key performance indicators focusing on sustainability issues: the energy return of energy invested, the levelized cost of hydrogen and the life cycle assessment. We compared several hydrogen generation processes, each denoted by a unique colour code: (i) green hydrogen, produced by electrolysis of water using electricity from renewable sources, (ii) grid hydrogen, produced by electrolysis using grid electricity, (iii) grey hydrogen, produced from natural gas using steam reforming and (iv) blue hydrogen, like grey one, but coupled with carbon capture and storage. In conclusion, the most sustainable hydrogen production method is the green hydrogen, produced by water electrolysis.

Sustainability Analysis of Hydrogen Production Processes: a Comparison Based on Sustainability Indicators

Barbera Elena;Mio Andrea
;
Massi Pavan Alessandro;Bertucco Alberto;Fermeglia Maurizio
2022-01-01

Abstract

Hydrogen is a versatile energy carrier and storage medium that may be employed in a variety of applications. It may be produced using different processes. In this work, process simulation is used to obtain material and energy balances for each process investigated, as well as for the evaluation of capital and maintenance costs. Process simulation outcomes are then used to estimate three key performance indicators focusing on sustainability issues: the energy return of energy invested, the levelized cost of hydrogen and the life cycle assessment. We compared several hydrogen generation processes, each denoted by a unique colour code: (i) green hydrogen, produced by electrolysis of water using electricity from renewable sources, (ii) grid hydrogen, produced by electrolysis using grid electricity, (iii) grey hydrogen, produced from natural gas using steam reforming and (iv) blue hydrogen, like grey one, but coupled with carbon capture and storage. In conclusion, the most sustainable hydrogen production method is the green hydrogen, produced by water electrolysis.
https://www.cetjournal.it/index.php/cet/article/view/CET2296019
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/3037261
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