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Techno-economic analysis of large-scale green hydrogen production and storage

Villarreal Vives, Ana María; Wang, Ruiqi; Roy, Sumit; Smallbone, Andrew

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Ana María Villarreal Vives

Dr Ruiqi Wang
Post Doctoral Research Associate


Producing clean energy and minimising energy waste are essential to achieve the United Nations sustainable development goals such as Sustainable Development Goal 7 and 13. This research analyses the techno-economic potential of waste heat recovery from multi-MW scale green hydrogen production. A 10 MW proton exchange membrane electrolysis process is modelled with a heat recovery system coupled with an organic Rankine cycle (ORC) to drive the mechanical compression of hydrogen. The technical results demonstrate that when implementing waste heat recovery coupled with an ORC, the first-law efficiency of electrolyser increases from 71.4% to 98%. The ORC can generate sufficient power to drive the hydrogen's compression from the outlet pressure at the electrolyser 30 bar, up to 200 bar. An economic analysis is conducted to calculate the levelised cost of hydrogen (LCOH) of system and assess the feasibility of implementing waste heat recovery coupled with ORC. The results reveal that electricity prices dominate the LCOH. When electricity prices are low (e.g., dedicated offshore wind electricity), the LCOH is higher when implementing heat recovery. The additional capital expenditure and operating expenditure associated with the ORC increases the LCOH and these additional costs outweigh the savings generated by not purchasing electricity for compression. On the other hand, heat recovery and ORC become attractive and feasible when grid electricity prices are higher.


Villarreal Vives, A. M., Wang, R., Roy, S., & Smallbone, A. (2023). Techno-economic analysis of large-scale green hydrogen production and storage. Applied Energy, 346, Article 121333.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 19, 2023
Online Publication Date Jun 8, 2023
Publication Date Sep 15, 2023
Deposit Date Jun 9, 2023
Publicly Available Date Jun 12, 2023
Journal Applied Energy
Print ISSN 0306-2619
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 346
Article Number 121333


Published Journal Article (3.5 Mb)

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Copyright Statement
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons CC-BY license, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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