For months, thousands of students have taken to the streets every Friday to call for a more sustainable energy system. Under the hashtag #Scientists4Future, scientists have now launched their own campaign in support of the #Fridays4Future generation.
For me, the new year started off with a bang: While hydrogen and fuel cells had rarely been discussed at the many energy conferences held in past years, power-to-gas, electrolyzers and fuel cells are quickly seizing the spotlight these days. It’s very good news for technology suppliers listed on the stock exchange, especially for those mentioned below. The market has finally built enough momentum, and the public is taking note. Also, Tesla’s position as the leader of the field took a bit of a hit in 2018: Competition grew fiercer, with more and more businesses offering electric or hybrid models.
Due to a population that continues to grow and a booming economy, India will be the country to experience the largest increase in energy demand by 2040, according to the IEA’s latest World Energy Outlook published in 2017. The immense hunger for energy is being driven mainly by additions of generation capacity as well as electric vehicles. The government knows that fossil fuels will be able to meet only part of that huge demand.
The Hyundai Motor Group, based in South Korea, is one of few automakers that offer fuel cell vehicles on the market. In mid-June, it announced that it would support Audi’s work in the field and both corporations have since signed an agreement about cross-licensing patents. The contract expressly mentions the group companies that are part of the endeavor.
Every two years, the H2Congress takes place in North Rhine-Westphalia’s state office in Berlin. And if there is one technology that has grown in popularity throughout past conferences, it was hydrogen. So it seems only fitting that this year’s event, held June 6 and 7, placed the emphasis on electrolysis and power-to-gas, that is, the economic implications of hydrogen use in transportation and energy markets.
Enthusiasm was on display at the International Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Conference and Exhibition, which was held July 26 through 28 in Beijing. It showed the incredible speed at which China as well as Japan have grown in importance in the global hydrogen and fuel cell market. The People’s Republic knows how to benefit from the potential offered by both technologies.
In late April, Asahi Kasei Europe started up one of its alkaline electrolyzers (see image) at the German h2herten Hydrogen Center of Excellence in Herten. The recently established business is part of the Asahi Kasei Group, a Japanese chemical company that employs 30,000 and has intimate knowledge of chloralkaline electrolysis. The electrolyzer in Herten was designed specifically to produce hydrogen from intermittent renewable sources.
The second stop for the successor to Hyundai’s ix35 Fuel Cell was neither Detroit nor Tokyo but Offenbach, home to the automaker’s German and European headquarters. In mid-January, seven weeks prior to its official European premiere in Geneva, the Nexo was shown to a select group of journalists in this city by the river Main in the German state of Hesse.
The 14th International Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Expo took place Feb. 28 through March 2 in Tokyo, Japan. According to the organizers, it is the largest hydrogen and fuel cell show in the world. One regular exhibitor over the past several years has been H2BZ-Initiative Hessen, the hydrogen and fuel cell initiative from the German state of Hesse.
Hydrogenious Technologies, based in Erlangen, Germany, has succeeded in bolstering its global partner network over the past months. In mid-January, it said that it had signed a cooperation agreement with a Chinese supplier, Zhongshan Broad Ocean Motor Co., while South African mining corporation Anglo American Platinum, also known as Amplats, had increased its investment in the company.