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Optimal system layout and locations for fully renewable high temperature co-electrolysis

Simon Morgenthaler, Wilhelm Kuckshinrichs and Dirk Witthaut

Applied Energy, 2020, vol. 260, issue C, No S0306261919319051

Abstract: High temperature co-electrolysis can be a promising technology for the transformation of energy systems as it enables sector coupling and carbon dioxide utilization. In this article, we analyze the optimal layout and operation of distributed electrolysis sites powered exclusively by local renewable energy sources and a local battery storage device for current techno-economic parameters. For this purpose an energy system model with a spatial resolution of 277 regions within Europe is set up, which facilitates the analysis of intermittent renewable electricity generation, a battery storage device and the innovative high temperature co-electrolysis. We discuss the techno-economic competitiveness and analyze potential leverage points for improvement such as an enhanced flexibility. The lowest costs are found in Lincolnshire with 0.24 €/kWh and the highest costs in Central Slovakia with 0.49 €/kWh differing by more than a factor of two. Remarkably, several locations with vastly different resources and layouts lead to a similar techno-economic performance of the investigated system. We compare the techno-economic performance of high temperature co-electrolysis with steam methane reforming as the conventional synthesis gas production route.

Keywords: High temperature co-electrolysis; Power-to-X; Carbon capture and utilization (CCU); Sector coupling; Techno-economic analysis; Energy systems modeling (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1016/j.apenergy.2019.114218

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