The R-Hynoca station in Strasbourg will produce clean hydrogen energy from locally sourced biomass. A joint venture between R-ENS and Haffner Energy, the project is expected to supply the local transport industry as it transitions from fossils fuels to clean energy. By deploying Haffner Energy’s game changing Hynoca technology, the station is hoped to play a key role in Strasbourg Council’s mission for decarbonisation.
Launched in August 2019, the first Hynoca industrial unit was delivered in February 2021. The station is expected to open for commercial hydrogen production in Q1 of 2023. Once operational, the unit will produce up to 720kg/ day of H2 syngas called Hypergas.
The station is expected to supply either…
travelling an average
of 40,000km/ year
900 light utility vehicles
travelling an average of
20,000km/ year each
1,7000 light vehicles
travelling an average of
15,000km/ year each
Locally sourced biomass
The biomass used in the production of hydrogen comes from a variety of local agricultural sources. These include sawdust, bark and straw. To reach its targets, the station will require approximately 22 tonnes of biomass per day. Coming from sources within 50km of Strasbourg, they are an abundant energy source. The close proximity of resources reduce the need for long supply chains and further reduces the stations carbon footprint.
The production process
The first stage in the production of Hypergas is a thermochemical process which heats the biomass at over 500 degrees. Following the thermolysis, the gas is then passed through a SBR machine. By heating at 1200 degrees, the molecules are ‘cracked’ into exploitable hydrogen Hypergas. After further purification stages, the gas is ready for commercial use. The process is in part powered by the hydrogen produced, which adds to the sustainability of the production loop.
In addition to Hypergas, the process produces a by-product called Biochar. Biochar is a culture substrate which is becoming increasingly popular with the agro-industrial industry as it increases soil productivity while reducing the need for watering. When used for farming, Biochar acts as a carbon sink by permanently capturing carbon into the soil. Consequently, this increases the viability of the Hynoca Station as a powerful tool in the mix for carbon neutrality.
The station has been welcomed by local authorities. They see it is a welcome step towards long term goals of reaching carbon neutrality and switching to clean and sustainable energy sources. Moreover, by sourcing and producing locally, the station will provide an economic boost to the region by way of job creation and resource production. Haffner Energy see the R-Hynoca Strasbourg station as an exciting and important milestone towards the further deployment of Hynoca stations in France and beyond.