Masdar aims to complete the design for its green hydrogen demonstrator project by the end of this year, Fawaz Al Muharrami, Acting Executive Director, Masdar Clean Energy, told The National.
In January, Masdar joined forces with Abu Dhabi Department of Energy, Etihad Airways, Lufthansa Group, Khalifa University of Science and Technology, Siemens Energy, and Marubeni Corporation in an initiative designed to support the development of Abu Dhabi’s green hydrogen economy.
The initiative aims to establish a demonstrator plant at Masdar City, Abu Dhabi’s flagship sustainable urban development community, to explore the development of green hydrogen, sustainable fuels and e-kerosene production for transport, shipping, and aviation.
"For this year, we have already initiated the assessment, the design aspect of the project," Al Muharrami told The National in an interview. "Hopefully, by the end of this year we'll be able to complete that work so that we can begin the next phase of that project." The next phase would involve construction of the project, which is likely to take two years, Al Muharrami was cited as saying by the newspaper.
The project represents the first concrete step under a strategic partnership between Mubadala Investment Company, the sole shareholder of Masdar, and Siemens Energy, intended to accelerate green hydrogen capabilities in Abu Dhabi. That partnership sits under the over-arching framework for the development of the UAE hydrogen economy, the Abu Dhabi Hydrogen Alliance, formed under an MoU between Mubadala, ADNOC, and ADQ.
Hydrogen, the most abundant element in the universe, can be used as a substitute for fossil fuels in a wide variety of applications. Green hydrogen – produced through renewable energy – is likely to play a critical role in decarbonisation strategies in a number of industries, including long-haul transport, shipping and aviation, where direct electrification is more challenging. Green hydrogen could compete on costs with fossil fuel alternatives by 2030, if its development is properly supported, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).