Hysata puts hydrogen electrolyser tech to test in real-world setting


Hysata, a company spun out of the University of Wollongong (UOW), has secured more than $23 million (USD 14.87 million) from the Australian and Queensland governments to fund a project designed to accelerate the development and commercialisation of its “capillary-fed” electrolyser cell technology.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has committed $20.9 million to help fund the demonstration project while Queensland government-owned power company Stanwell Corporation is backing the initiative with $3 million. Stanwell will also provide the site and facilities for the field deployment of the electrolyser.

Hysata is developing ultra-high efficiency hydrogen electrolyser technology that it said eliminates almost all resistance in the electrolysis process and has the potential to significantly shift the economics of green hydrogen production.

“Existing electrolysers face energy losses from electrical resistance and gaseous bubbles forming on electrodes, reducing the overall efficiency of the system,” Hysata said, adding that its technology “has been proven to produce hydrogen with 95% (41.5 kWh/kg) efficiency, well ahead of incumbent technologies that operate with efficiencies close to 75% (52.5 kWh/kg).”

ARENA said the technology has the “potential to reduce the cost of renewable hydrogen production through reduced electricity inputs.”

“The technology also offers lower balance of plant costs, with reduced electrical resistance resulting reduced cooling requirements,” it said. “If delivered at scale, these reduced input costs will help lower the levelised cost of hydrogen, making renewable hydrogen a commercially viable energy resource.”

Hysata CEO Paul Barrett with chief technical officer Gerry Swiegers.

Image: Hysata

Hysata plans to develop and test a 5 MW unit at its new 8,000 sqm electrolyser manufacturing facility in Port
Kembla on the New South Wales south coast. The electrolyser array will then undergo testing and validation before it is relocated to Queensland where it will be installed adjacent to the 1,460 MW Stanwell Power Station near Rockhampton. The site has available land, water and grid connection capacity.

Hysata said initial development of the system is already underway with the field pilot at Stanwell due to commence in 2025.

Hysata Chief Executive Officer Paul Barrett said the project is a pivotal moment in the company’s rapid technological and commercial scaling, as it works towards fulfilling a 9.4 GW pipeline of signed conditional orders and letters of intent.

“Our plan encompasses the construction of a 100 MW per annum production line, with commercial-scale units
scheduled for delivery in 2025, including the 5 MW electrolyser unit for Stanwell’s project. And we
will ramp up rapidly to giga-scale capacity thereafter,” he said.

“We look forward to creating more local jobs and strengthening Australia’s sovereign manufacturing capabilities through this project, which will pave the way for Hysata’s scaling to fulfil a multi-billion-dollar pipeline of orders from around the world.”

ARENA Chief Executive Officer Darren Miller said the project is a crucial step to enabling purchase orders for the technology.

“This electrolyser technology could be a game-changer for renewable hydrogen,” he said.

“The demonstration at Stanwell’s site will be key to unlocking commercial demand for Hysata’s product by proving the technology works at scale.”

The new funding builds on $8.98 million awarded by ARENA under the German-Australian HyGATE program, with an additional $9 million contribution from Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

With the help of the HyGATE grant, Hysata is currently working on the development of a 200 kW electrolyser system that will demonstrate the key components of the 5 MW commercial-scale demonstration unit.

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