Shell starts up Europe’s largest hydrogen electrolyser
Shell has started up Europe’s largest hydrogen electrolyser of its kind at our energy and chemicals park Rheinland, in Germany. The proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolyser was built by ITM Power and will be operated by Shell.
As part of the Refhyne consortium and with funding from the European Commission, the 10 megawatt PEM electrolyser uses renewable energy to initially produce up to 1,300 tonnes of green hydrogen a year.
The green hydrogen will initially be used to produce fuels with lower carbon-intensity at the refinery. Shell is also working to enable the green hydrogen to help decarbonise other sectors such as road transport.
The fully operational plant is the first to use this technology at such a large scale in a refinery and plans are already under way to expand the capacity of the electrolyser to 100 megawatts.
Shell has set a target to become a net-zero-emissions energy business by 2050, in step with society. As part of its plan, Shell will transform five core refineries into integrated Energy and Chemicals Parks by 2030. Transforming these refineries will mean using more recycled and renewables feedstocks, such as hydrogen and waste oils and processing less crude oil. As a result, by 2030 Shell will reduce production of traditional fuels by 55% and will produce more of the low-carbon fuels, chemicals and energy products. The start-up of the Refhyne electrolyser is a great step as Shell accelerates its journey to meeting the evolving energy needs of its customers.