An analysis of hydrogen production from renewable electricity sources
Three aspects of producing hydrogen via renewable electricity sources are analyzed to determine the potential for solar and wind hydrogen production pathways: a renewable hydrogen resource assessment, a cost analysis of hydrogen production via electrolysis, and the annual energy requirements of producing hydrogen for refueling. The results indicate that ample resources exist to produce transportation fuel from wind and solar power. However, hydrogen prices are highly dependent on electricity prices. For renewables to produce hydrogen at $2 kg(-1), using electrolyzers available in 2004, electricity prices would have to be less than $0.01 kWh(-1). Additionally, energy requirements for hydrogen refueling stations are in excess of 20 GWh/year. It may be challenging for dedicated renewable systems at the filling station to meet such requirements. Therefore, while plentiful resources exist to provide clean electricity for the production of hydrogen for transportation fuel, challenges remain to identify optimum economic and technical configurations to provide renewable energy to distributed hydrogen refueling stations. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.