Air Liquide and Siemens Energy have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to research and develop PEM (Proton Exchange Membrane) electrolysis technology.
According to the statement, they intend to focus their activities on these key areas: co-creation of large industrial-scale hydrogen projects in collaboration with customers, laying the ground for mass manufacturing of electrolyzers in Europe, especially in Germany and France, and R&D activities to co-develop next-generation electrolyzer technologies.
With this cooperation, Air Liquide and Siemens Energy plan to initiate a European ecosystem for electrolysis and hydrogen technology together with other partners. The partners have already identified cooperation opportunities for large scale sustainable hydrogen projects both in France, Germany and other European countries. One of these opportunities is the Air Liquide-H2V Normandy project in France with a capacity of 200MW.
Christian Bruch, CEO of Siemens Energy, said: “Building up a sustainable Hydrogen economy will still require to amend the framework conditions in the energy market. However, it will be through partnerships and collaboration that we can shape this market. We highly appreciate to co-create innovative solutions with Air Liquide. Collectively we will overcome the challenges that lie ahead to industrialize the technology and make sustainably generated hydrogen a success story.”
Benoît Potier, chairman and CEO of Air Liquide, said: “Hydrogen is a key enabler of the energy transition. In the context of unprecedented acceleration in Europe of hydrogen technologies and markets, the time to scale-up is now, notably in France and Germany. The partnership between Air Liquide and Siemens Energy paves the way for the creation of a leading European ecosystem capable of supplying decarbonised hydrogen at competitive prices and promoting the emergence of a low-carbon society. We look forward to this Franco-German cooperation.”
Bruno Le Maire, French Minister of Economy, Finance and the Recovery, said: “Now, is the time to invest massively in order to develop new value chains and new technologies. Now, is the time to act… The ambitious project of Air Liquide and Siemens Energy is only the beginning of industrial cooperation that must develop beyond a Franco-German alliance. The recovery must be above all a European recovery. I also salute Air Liquide’s mobilisation in the framework of the French hydrogen plan, notably through its participation and commitment within the National Hydrogen Council.”
Hydrogen is believed to be a key pillar in achieving the European Union’s objectives for CO2 and greenhouse gas emission reduction. In order to meet rapidly growing demand, and to lower costs, it is key to accelerate the production of sustainably generated hydrogen through large-scale PEM electrolysers.
In the framework of their cooperation Air Liquide and Siemens Energy will jointly apply for large projects funding under the EU’s Green Deal and Important Project of Common European Interest (IPCEI)-scheme for hydrogen, funded by the French and German Governments. The IPCEI-funding is required to fast start those activities and meet the challenging timeline set out by the European Green New Deal, the EU Hydrogen Strategy, as well as the French and German National Hydrogen Strategies.