ABB announces support for Asian-Pacific Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) pilot project

  • October 24, 2019
  • ABB
  • News
ABB announces support for Asian-Pacific Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) pilot project
ABB announces support for Asian-Pacific Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) pilot project

October 24, 2019 - ABB will deliver automation, electrification and instrumentation solutions for the Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) pilot project.

The HESC pilot project aims to produce clean hydrogen in Australia and transport it to Japan, in an effort to commercialize technology to liquefy and transport hydrogen. The project aims to test the production of hydrogen gas through brown coal gasification, liquefaction of hydrogen gas, storage and loading onto a specialized carrier for transport across the Asia-Pacific.

The HESC pilot project has the potential to create AUD$2 billion in exports nationally, positioning Australia as a global leader in hydrogen production.[i] The Australian Government has described the pilot project as a ‘crucial step’ towards Australia becoming an international leader in hydrogen production, with the Australian and Victorian Governments pledging AU$50 million (US$34 million) each to the AU$500 million (US$343 million) HESC pilot project.[ii] Construction of the small-scale pilot facilities at the Port of Hastings commenced in 2019, and the pilot phase will operate for approximately one year from 2020.

ABB has been awarded orders in both Australia and Japan, winning an electrification and instrumentation contract in Australia and an automation contract in Japan from KHI.

In Australia, ABB will supply and integrate electrical equipment including LV switchgear and distribution panels, power quality components, UPS, end-to-end engineering, project management and commissioning services, as well as instrumentation, motor and gearboxes for the Hydrogen Liquefaction and Loading Terminal at the Port of Hastings in Victoria. At the terminal, hydrogen gas produced by brown coal gasification at the Latrobe Valley will be liquefied and stored.

In Japan, there is a liquid hydrogen receiving terminal at Kobe. ABB Bailey Japan Ltd., which has deep domain expertise in LNG cryogenic terminals, will provide an automation and safety system to support the local operations.

Hydrogen is anticipated to supply up to a fifth of global energy needs and generate a market worth US$2.5 trillion by 2050. With the world’s fifth-largest total energy consumption, yet low natural resources of coal, oil and gas, Japan considers hydrogen as integral to meeting its future transportation and power generation requirements.[iv] Liquefication supports in reducing hydrogen to 1/800th of its volume for more efficient transportation over long distances, with its long-term use as a fuel considered a potential solution for lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

[i]Australian Government, ‘Landmark pilot hydrogen project underway’,

[ii]Ibid. US amounts are approximate equivalent.

[iii]Hydrogen Council cited in HESC, ‘A world-first project to create a global supply chain for hydrogen, the clean energy solution of the future’,

[iv]Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, ‘Formulation of a New Strategic Roadmap for Hydrogen and Fuel Cells’,

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