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Technology Breakthroughs Shaping the Future of Power-to-Gas 

  • December 2015
  • 46 pages
  • Frost & Sullivan
Report ID: 3517864

Summary

Table of Contents

Technology Breakthroughs Shaping the Future of Power-to-Gas : Converting Excess Electricity into Hydrogen or Methane

Power-to-gas is a concept to convert surplus of electricity either from renewable or conventional sources to chemical energy. There are two major processes in power-to-gas—electrolysis process and methanation process. From this, there are three types of electrolysis process, namely, alkaline, proton exchange membrane (PEM) and solid-oxide electrolysis. Methanation process is mainly of two types—thermocatalytic and biological methanation. Hopes for power to gas is immensely high as a clean method to store excess generated electricity, stabilize the power grid or redirect excess electricity toward other useful applications. With serious R&D efforts all over the world, technology readiness level (TRL) of power-to-gas is expected to speed up, thus establishing a complete system in the near future.

This report will touch upon:

- Technology Snapshot and Trends
• Innovation Analysis for Electrolysis and Methanation Processes.
• Region-Wise Adoption
- Application Landscape
- Future Outlook & Technology Readiness Level

Key Findings

- Power-to-gas is a concept to convert surplus of electricity either from renewable or conventional sources to chemical energy. The main purposes of the conversion are to store excess generated electricity, stabilize the power grid, or redirect excess electricity toward other useful applications.

- There are two major processes in power-to-gas—electrolysis process and methanation process. The electrolysis process is to convert electricity to hydrogen, while the methanation process is a method to produce synthetic methane (by combining hydrogen generated from the electrolysis process with carbon dioxide).

- There are three types of electrolysis process, namely, alkaline, proton exchange membrane (PEM) and solid-oxide electrolysis. Alkaline and PEM electrolysis processes are already commercialized, but solid-oxide process is still in research and development (R&D) phase. R&D trends for electrolysis is shifting towards building a high-performance and low-cost process by creating advanced electrocatalysts and thermally stable materials at high temperature

- The methanation process is mainly of two types—thermocatalytic and biological methanation. Thermocatalytic methanation is already commercialized while biological methanation is still at pilot stage. The major R&D theme for methanation process is to develop a high performance catalyst.

- Hydrogen or methane produced from electrolysis or methanation process in power-to-gas systems can be converted back to usable power by stationary fuel cells, internal combustion engines or a combined heat power (CHP) system.

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