McPhy Energy, a leading developer and manufacturer of solid-state hydrogen storage, recently presented the world’s first system coupling an industrial-scale hydrogen generator with a 100kg solid hydrogen storage unit.

The demonstration, which showed the results of the first phase of the French PUSHY program, was given at the company’s headquarters in La Motte-Fanjas, in the department of the Drome, France.

While such systems enable the supply of onsite hydrogen for industry, they also mark a world premiere in the transition to renewable energies, enabling approaches such as “power-to-gas” and hydrogen mobility to become both technical and commercial realities.

The McPhy Energy technology for storing hydrogen in the form of hydrides is a safe, low-pressure, high-density solution. The generator, which produces hydrogen through the electrolysis of water, is manufactured by McPhy Italy and powered by 60KW of electricity from the local electrical grid. The demonstrator shown today can produce 12m3 of hydrogen per hour. The gas is then stored in McPhy’s HDS 100 system, which is based on magnesium hydride technology developed and manufactured by McPhy Energy in La Motte-Fanjas, France.

The system inaugurates the first commercial product line for onsite industrial hydrogen users worldwide.  This first model, which has a storage capacity of 100kg (for an energy content of 3.3MWh), is the first in a commercial range reaching up to 500kg of stored hydrogen (16.5MWh).

It enables traditional hydrogen logistics (high-pressure delivery) to be replaced with production that is located at the point of use and aligned with demand. This ambitious project, funded by BPI France (formerly OSEO/ISI) was developed in an industrial consortium lead by McPhy Energy, with the CEA (the French Atomic & Alternative Energy Agency) and the company WH2.

“The pilot presented at our manufacturing site in La Motte-Fanjas is the first deliverable of the PUSHY project. In 2014, it will be followed by a demonstration of hydrogen production by hydroelectric energy, for the storage and exploitation of renewable energies in France as in Europe and across the globe,” said Pascal Mauberger, CEO of McPhy Energy.  “With the deployment of renewable energies, storage requirements are substantial, and solutions are needed to respond to those needs.  That is the objective of this demonstrator model, which marks the beginning of a complete line of groundbreaking products.”