Making green hydrogen accessible for everyone
- Technology that allows a hydrogen solar panel to convert 15% of sunlight into hydrogen gas
- Tests in the Fluxys lab
- Innovation funding Smarthub Vlaams-Brabant
In a nutshell
Comate Engineering & Design, KU Leuven and the Province of Flemish Brabant are joining forces to make green hydrogen accessible for everyone. Together, they will use their research, knowledge and experience to develop hydrogen panels. The innovative panels will be designed with the purpose to be produced on a large scale so they can be used anywhere.
The full story
Green H2 has been proclaimed as the solution for the future for years, but was too expensive. Until recently, green H2 was only generated via green electricity. However, these installations are expensive and are only interesting for large capacities, such as wind farms. Comate, KU Leuven and the Province of Flemish Brabant strive to change that with their project: The development of an affordable hydrogen panel that only needs sunlight and air to produce green H2.
The revolutionary technology in which water vapor is directly converted into H2, developed by the researchers at KU Leuven, is unique in the world, but is not yet ready for upscaling. KU Leuven relies on Comate’s technical and design expertise to translate the prototype into a successful industrialized product. The engineering company has a track record in developing high-quality technical products and translates ideas into a success in the market.
In the future, individuals could use these panels to generate hydrogen, which they can use to heat their homes and provide them with electricity. It can be stored and can be used to charge electric cars. This also offers opportunities for companies. For example, transport companies could run their fleet on self-generated H2. In compactness and use, the panel will be similar to regular solar panels. The control system will optimize efficiency and perform the necessary measurements.
The project received an innovation subsidy from the province of Flemish Brabant. “It is an innovative project with a clear market potential, based on a collaboration of companies, knowledge institutions and other actors,” said Ann Schevenels, deputy for economics. Hydrogen panels are a unique technology that offers completely new economic and social opportunities.