ES Group participates in the European NPHyСo project, which explores the possibilities of nuclear hydrogen cogeneration
ES Group has become a partner in the NPHyСo (Nuclear Powered Hydrogen Cogeneration) research project, which is dedicated to nuclear hydrogen cogeneration and is funded by the European Union’s research and training program.
NPHyCo started in October 2022 in the German city of Frankfurt and will last for two and a half years. The objective of the project is to explore the possibilities of low-carbon hydrogen production using nuclear power plants in order to provide its adequate amount at an affordable price for sectors that are difficult to decarbonize.
The project leader is the German division of Framatome. The project also involves the Brussels-based NuclearEurope Association (former Foratom, its members are 15 national nuclear associations representing about 3000 companies in the EU nuclear sector), the Italian companies Ansaldo Energia SPA and Ansaldo Nucleare SPA, the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) , the Czech Research Center Řež (СVŘ, part of the ÚJV Řež group), the German expert non-profit organization Gesellschaft für Anlagen- und Reaktorsicherheit (GRS) and the Technical University of Dresden, the Hungarian Hunatom, the Dutch NRG and the Spanish Tecnatom.
The NPHyCo will evaluate the feasibility of hydrogen production using an existing nuclear power plant and calculate the added value of such a project. In addition, potential locations where a pilot project could be implemented will be considered.
The project provides for activities in 6 areas:
- development of a concept that will include identification of the needs and benefits of hydrogen production using nuclear power;
- preparation of a technical roadmap containing the technical conditions for connecting a hydrogen production unit to an existing nuclear power plant (taking into account the needs of a hydrogen plant, the capabilities and resources of a nuclear power plant that can be used in conjunction with a hydrogen plant, interaction between facilities);
- creation of an economic roadmap (business plan) for the project, which will include economic feasibility, assessment of potential costs and revenues, identification of market needs for low-carbon hydrogen and how nuclear power can help meet demand, as well as economic comparison between nuclear power and other sources of hydrogen production;
- analysis of licensing requirements, which includes identification of key licensing issues that need to be considered when planning a hydrogen plant combined with a nuclear power plant and ways to optimize the licensing process;
- preparation of an implementation roadmap, which will contain proposals for the location of pilot plants and their planning. This includes development of criteria for identifying the optimal concept, review of technical and economic solutions, assessment of the integration once the location of the pilot project is determined;
- communication and public information, which, in particular, provide for the dissemination of project results among stakeholders, obtaining feedback and identifying potential needs for education and training.
ES Group is the leader of the 5th area “Preparation of the implementation roadmap”. The goal of this area is to put into practice the results and knowledge gained in other areas by evaluating and planning the nuclear hydrogen cogeneration in Europe and Ukraine for a pilot power unit.
To do this, it is necessary to harmonize the requirements for hydrogen stations and nuclear power plants, developed and compiled during work in other areas, with the situation and existing conditions for locating a nuclear power plant in Europe and Ukraine. For the pilot power unit, consideration will be particularly given to the availability and condition of the infrastructure and resources required at the green hydrogen production site. In addition, the regulatory and operational documentation of the NPP will be collected and analyzed in order to find out the possibilities for the production of products other than electricity at the NPP site and to assess the technical implementation of the project, including a choice of the optimal scheme for transmitting electricity to the hydrogen station.