Africa’s first project that involves producing hydrogen from water using renewable energy has been installed in Morocco.
The hydrogen system includes a storage tank, a fuel cell and a hydrogen electrolyser, which produces hydrogen from water. It uses electricity to break water into hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen is then stored in the tank while the oxygen is released into the atmosphere. The system helps store excess wind energy and resolves the issue of wind intermittency and excess production.
The project is a collaboration between Scotland’s Pure Energy Centre, Morocco’s Sahara Wind Inc and Al Akhawayn University. It was developed to store the energy generated by three wind turbines installed in the university and use it when needed.
Khalid Benhamou from Sahara Wind Inc. said: “Renewables have one major issue in that they are intermittent. We have identified that we can reduce this issue by storing excess energy produced from renewables as hydrogen and thereafter reuse the hydrogen in a fuel cell for power generation. We feel that coupling wind and hydrogen will play an important role in Africa’s future through a variety of applications involving the continent’s main industries.”