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CDU to establish a pilot hydrogen-fuelled generator


Charles Darwin University (CDU) will be part of the Northern Territory’s hydrogen-fuelled future with a pilot hydrogen generator, storage and fuel-cell system to be established in Darwin. 

The Hydrogen Energy Storage System (HESS) is a first for the NT. 

CDU’s Energy and Resources Institute (ERI) will operate the system for industry partners, students and researchers to further develop and commercialise hydrogen as an energy source. 

ERI director, Professor Suresh Thennadil, said a green hydrogen future for the NT would need comprehensive research and evaluation and the ability to train a workforce with the appropriate skills required for sustaining a hydrogen industry. 

“There is still a lot of work to do for the NT to become a hydrogen producer for a global energy market that is investing heavily in alternative fuels,” Thennadil said. 

“ERI, with its REMHART grid systems hub, is perfectly placed to help drive this renewable energy industry in the NT by bringing dedicated researchers and industry together to work through the challenges.” 

He said funding from the Australian government enables the university to develop a Grid Testing Facility that fosters collaborations between CDU and industry in the NT through applied research projects and training programs. 

Thennadil said the hydrogen electrolyser and fuel cell system would expand capabilities in renewable energy systems. 

Hybrid Systems provides the electrolyser, hydrogen storage and fuel-cell system to be housed at the Renewable Energy Grid Testing Facility in East Arm Wharf, Darwin.    

Hybrid Systems executive director, Mike Hall, said the system would create hydrogen fuel from fresh water and store the fuel at the test facility. 

“We are delighted to work with CDU to adapt our proven and reliable SPS product for researchers to test the capability of creating renewable hydrogen and integrating electrolysers and fuel cells into the grid,” Hall said. 

Hybrid Systems Australia has its headquarters in Western Australia and provides on- and off-grid renewable energy services. 

The NT government announced last year that it would invest in and support a renewable hydrogen industry in the NT. 

The Northern Territory Renewable Hydrogen Strategy stated that the government’s vision was for the NT to be an international-scale renewable hydrogen technology research, production and downstream manufacturing centre. 

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