Linde's glycerin-based hydrogen achieves certification

By Erin Voegele | May 03, 2012

The Linde Group recently announced that its glycerin-based hydrogen has been certified by TÜV SÜD, a leading testing, inspection and certification organization. The certification was an important accomplishment, and was announced by Linde the same day the Hannover Messe 2012 trade show kicked off. Linde was the sole supplier of hydrogen for the fuel-cell vehicles organized by the Clean Energy Partnership at this year’s event.

Linde currently produces hydrogen using crude glycerin feedstock at a pilot-scale facility. The company first announced the project in April 2009, when it noted that the German-based plant would utilize glycerin byproduct from the biodiesel industry to produce hydrogen. According to Linde, the plant is designed to “reprocess, pyrolyze and reform raw glycerin,” forming a methane-rich gas that is fed into and existing hydrogen plant for purification and liquefaction of the hydrogen. The glycerin used in the process is distilled to remove water and salts before it is cracked under high temperature and pressure to produce the pyrolysis gas

Information released by Linde specifies that the pilot plant became operational during the second half of 2011. When operating in regular mode, the company said it can produce up to 50 cubic meters of hydrogen per hour.

According to Linde, the pilot facility has shown that its pyroreforming process has the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 50 percent when compared to conventional hydrogen production processes, which utilize natural gas. Furthermore, Linde noted that ramping up the process to commercial scale could increase greenhouse gas saving to up to 80 percent.

“For the first time, we now have a certified source of green hydrogen to power zero-emissions fuel-cell cars throughout Germany,” said Andreas Opfermann, head of clean energy and innovation management at Linde. “Working with our research partners, we will be exploring other feedstocks and technologies to produce sustainable hydrogen on an even broader scale in future.”

Regarding the availability of its fuel at the Hannover Messe, Linde said it used its “traiLH2gas” mobile station to refuel fuel-cell cars manufactured by GM/Opel, Volkswagen, Honda and Toyota with biobased-hydrogen. Linde will also supply certified green hydrogen to refueling stations located in Berlin and Hamburg. In addition, Linde and Daimler plan to construct 20 additional hydrogen fuel stations over the next three years, which are also expected to carry the fuel. 


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