Power-to-Gas: The role of chemical storage in an energy system with high shares of renewable energy
Thermal Science and Engineering
The conversion of the energy supply to renewable sources (wind, photovoltaics) will increase the volatility in electricity generation in the future. In order to ensure a balanced power balance in the power grid, storage is required - not only for a short time, but also seasonally. The bidirectional coupling of existing energy infrastructure with the power grid can help here by using the electricity in electrolysis systems to produce hydrogen. The hydrogen can be mixed with natural gas in the
... sting infrastructure (gas storage, pipelines) to a limited extent or converted directly to methane in a gas-catalytic reaction, methanation, with carbon dioxide and/or carbon monoxide. By using the natural gas infrastructure, the electricity grids are relieved and renewable energies can also be stored over long periods of time. Another advantage of this technology, known as "Power-to-Gas", is that the methane produced in this way represents a sink for CO2 emissions, as it replaces fossil sources and CO2 is thus fed into a closed cycle.Research in the field of Power-to-Gas technology is currently addressing technological advances both in the field of electrolysis and for the subsequent methanation, in particular to reduce investment costs. In the field of methanation, load-flexible processes are to be developed that are adapted to the fluctuating supply of hydrogen. The profitability of the Power-to-Gas process chain can be increased through synergistic integration into existing industrial processes. For example, an integrated smelting works offers a promising infrastructural environment, since, on the one hand, process gases containing carbon are produced in large quantities and, on the other hand, the oxygen as a by-product from the water electrolysis can be used directly. Such concepts suggest an economic application of Power-to-Gas technology in the near future.