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Green Wilhelmshaven will see both the construction of an ammonia import terminal and a 1GW electrolysis plant for the production of hydrogen. The electrolyser, in combination with the import terminal would be capable of supplying around 300,000 metric tons of hydrogen, or 10-20% of the demand expected for all of Germany in 2030.

Green Wilhelmshaven is Uniper’s flagship hydrogen project.

Uniper could supply between 10-20% of the entire German hydrogen demand by 2030 from Wilhelmshaven.

Why ammonia?

  • By 2030, The German Federal Government predicts that demand for hydrogen could grow to 90-110 TWh/a.
  • Large-scale imports are necessary since domestic production capacities for green hydrogen are not sufficient.
  • Ammonia is the more easily transportable form of hydrogen via large-scale ships to Germany and Europe. Other transport vectors like liquefied hydrogen (LH2) or liquid organic hydrogen carriers (LOHC) are expected to remain in the development stage for several years, and shipping capacities are limited.
  • Since ammonia is an important feedstock for various industrial processes, a well-developed market already exists (around 180mt annual consumption worldwide).
  • Handling, transportation, storage and usage of ammonia are well-established processes, with high safety standards. 

Why electrolysis?

  • Electrolysis is used to convert the abundant but unpredictable wind energy into hydrogen. This can be transported and stored very efficiently.
  • Offshore wind energy is landing on the German North Sea coast (current expansion targets of the German government: 2GW). However, onward transport to the south is complex and expensive with new power lines needed.
  • Large-scale electrolysis in Wilhelmshaven can directly absorb significant amounts of wind power and convert it into hydrogen.
  • The electrolysis and the entire downstream hydrogen infrastructure act as a “shock absorber”, which stores the wind energy as hydrogen and makes it transportable during strong wind conditions.

Uniper’s large-scale electrolyser will be optimised to serve several purposes:

  • It needs to produce large volumes of hydrogen in an economical way.
  • It can play a significant role for the operation of the regional power grid.
  • Transmission system operator (TSO)swill benefit from the fact that the electrolyser can be flexibly adjusted to the situation in the grid: If there is too much power being generated on a windy day, the production rate of the electrolyser can be increased thus relieving the load on the electrical power grid.
  • On days with too little generation of green electricity, the production rate of the electrolyser can be lowered to consume less power.
  • In order to fully utilise these grid-serving capabilities of the electrolyser, Uniper and TSOs will work closely together to ensure the full integration of both systems.

Green Wilhelmshaven is Uniper’s flagship hydrogen project.

Green Wilhelmshaven is listed in the Ten-Year Network Development Plan (TYNDP) for 2022 published by the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Gas (ENTSOG). This not only marks a major milestone in the project’s development, but it also demonstrates its relevance in European climate and energy ambitions. 

The TYNDP is published biennially in accordance with EU regulation to map current and future European gas infrastructure as well as possible development scenarios. The Plan also includes security of European gas supply and network stability. Projects listed in the TYNDP are vetted thoroughly by ENTSOG and are critical for long-term development of European energy supply. 

As a key cross border infrastructure project, Green Wilhelmshaven advances the linkage of energy systems in Europe and thus proves to be of pan-European importance. The amounts of renewable energy generated as well as supplied by Green Wilhelmshaven significantly bolster energy stability and advance sustainability. 

Energy-Hub - Port of Wilhelmshaven

In 2020, a group of companies, organisations and regional stakeholders formed the “ENERGY-HUB Port of Wilhelmshaven” initiative. Its goal is to put Wilhelmshaven on the European energy map and strengthen its role as a source for conventional and green energy for the region and the whole of Germany. The members of the “ENERGY-HUB Port of Wilhelmshaven” initiative are active in the import, production, storage and transportation of hydrogen and hydrogen derivatives, natural gas, oil, coal and the generation of renewable energies. For more information on the initiative go to www.energyhub-wilhelmshaven.de.