The Northern Territory is ready to play a key part in the development of innovative energy technology in Australia.
An innovative scientific and engineering trial has the potential to lead to the development of a green hydrogen energy industry in the Northern Territory.
The trial follows the NT being included in a new nationwide network of hydrogen technology clusters.
Industry leaders say the network is a “fantastic” step forward.
The Territory cluster is made up of the NT Government, Darwin Innovation Hub, Energy Club and Charles Darwin University.
The technology, owned by Aqua Aerem, captures water from air. It is the result of a joint venture between Australian companies Axcentium and Ahurei.
One kilogram of hydrogen needs nine kilograms of water – but Aqua Aerem aims to overcome this major challenge by taking water from the air and using it to generate hydrogen through electrolysis.
This could open up much of the Territory for hydrogen generation because it will no longer be needed to be near high-voltage transmission lines or plentiful water sources.
Co-founder of Aqua Aerem and managing director of Ahurei Dr Jarrod Ward believes the project has the potential eventually to not only power the Territory but also to be exported from Darwin to countries such as Japan, most likely as liquid ammonia.
Tennant Creek was chosen as the trial site because it enjoys high direct normal irradiation levels, is close to the Amadeus south-north gas pipeline and there was the opportunity to work with Territory Generation to provide hydrogen to power some of the township.
Territory Government support has made the small-scale trial in Tennant Creek possible.
A key element of the government’s Northern Territory Renewable Hydrogen Strategy is supporting trials of hydrogen technologies.
The government is striving to achieve zero net emissions by 2050.
It is estimated that the hydrogen economy could increase Australian Gross Domestic Product by up to $26 billion and add between 7600 to 16,900 jobs by 2050.