DENSO and DENSO Fukushima launch demonstration project to realise carbon neutral plant using hydrogen
Through the project which is supported by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organisation (NEDO), the two companies aim to build a model for the local production and consumption of hydrogen and create a carbon-neutral manufacturing plant.
Under the slogan “Bringing hope for the future for our planet, society, and all people”, set out in its Long-term Policy 2030, the DENSO Group has been working to maximise the value proposition in the “Green” and “Peace of Mind” areas. In the “Green” area, it has been making various efforts related to manufacturing, mobility products and energy use, to realise carbon neutrality.
To contribute to the realisation of a recycling oriented, as well as a carbon neutral society, DENSO is working on the interconnection and integrated control of “The Five Flows,” which are: "Free Movement of People”, "Flow of Goods”, "Energy Utilisation", "Minimisation of Resource Requirements" and "Flow of Data". In the "Energy Utilisation" flow, the aim is to build an energy circulation system that combines various types of energy, such as electricity, hydrogen and fuel, and as part of these efforts, it has been developing technologies to produce and use hydrogen, which is attracting much public attention as a future source of clean energy.
Meanwhile, DENSO Fukushima has constructed solar and wind power generation systems on its premises to make its plant carbon neutral and has worked to replace electricity derived from fossil fuels with renewable energy derived from private power generation. Inspired by the concept of social implementation for the development of future cites using hydrogen and related technologies in the Fukushima Prefecture, initiated by the Fukushima Prefectural Government and Toyota in June 2021, DENSO and DENSO Fukushima have participated as partner companies in a project to realise carbon neutral factories by using hydrogen as part of the initiative.
DENSO and DENSO Fukushima will therefore embark on a demonstration project in collaboration with Toyota to produce green hydrogen at DENSO Fukushima’s plant and use it in the plant’s gas furnace.
In terms of producing the hydrogen, Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) electrolyser system equipment, developed by Toyota, will be introduced to produce hydrogen through the electrolysis of water, as well as renewable energy derived from private power generation at DENSO Fukushima. The PEM electrolyser system offers high reliability and durability and low initial costs by using the same stack related components as Toyota’s FCEV “MIRAI”, making it possible to produce hydrogen more cheaply than before.
The LP gas, which is currently used in the afterburner furnace1 to make the exhaust gases generated in the plant harmless, will be replaced by hydrogen produced in-house. Combustion of hydrogen at high temperature generates NOx gas2. The burner structure has been improved to achieve gentle mixing and combustion of hydrogen and air, and the combustion temperature in the furnaces has also been lowered by using combustion simulation technology refined in the manufacture of automotive components. As a result, the suppression of NOx gas emissions and reduction of energy consumption are accomplished simultaneously.
In addition, in terms of transporting hydrogen, local production for local consumption of hydrogen, which aims to achieve self-consumption of hydrogen produced in-house, will help cut transport costs, which is one of the issues in utilising hydrogen.
Through the demonstration project, DENSO will build a model that can optimally introduce the required amount of hydrogen according to the size of the factories, by establishing a package from hydrogen production to utilisation. The project aims to expand the partnership to promote the use of hydrogen in the Fukushima region, with DENSO Fukushima serving as the hub, and spread the model of local production for local consumption of hydrogen from the Fukushima Prefecture to the rest of Japan.
DENSO and DENSO Fukushima will spread the use of hydrogen from Fukushima, aiming to achieve carbon neutrality at the plant and, as a model plant for carbon neutrality in the DENSO Group, accelerate the realisation of carbon neutrality in the production activities of the entire DENSO Group and contribute to carbon neutral manufacturing and a carbon neutral society.
1 The afterburner furnace was developed jointly with Chugai Ro Co., Ltd.
2 Nitrogen dioxides, such as nitrogen monoxide (NO) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2)
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