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ECT plans Victorian hydrogen from lignite demonstration plant

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Industrial technology groups Environmental Clean Technologies and GrapheneX will jointly develop Australia’s largest lignite (or brown coal) syngas into hydrogen and low emission electricity demonstration project at ECT’s site at Bacchus Marsh in Victoria.

The companies have signed a joint venture agreement to rollout phase 2 of ECT’s Baccus March Coldry technology demonstrator which will produce net-zero hydrogen from lignite syngas and hydrogen derivative products from lignite and waste biomass blends.

Coldry, claimed to dry lignite with zero direct-CO2 emissions, is planned for a major project at the Yallourn power station site in Victoria (pictured).

For the Bacchus Marsh project GrapheneX will supply a multi-feedstock 39MW turbine as well as funding of $3.5 million for installation of the turbine and formic acid (HCOOH) process equipment.

Formic acid is a liquid organic hydrogen carrier that the companies say is a safer, lower cost hydrogen transport alternative to ammonia or cryogenic hydrogen.

ECT will also commit $3.5 million to the joint venture, providing the site and funding for the installation of a pyrolysis kiln to produce char from syngas from Coldry pellets made from a blend of biomass and lignite.

ECT managing director Glenn Fozard said: “Once installed, the process will be the largest hydrogen production capability from lignite.

“Add that to the largest demonstration of low emission electricity from lignite syngas, and we have a site of national significance.”

ECT also announced it had received firm commitments from sophisticated investors to raise $5 million to fund its share of the project.

Picture: Environmental Clean Technologies/Site for Coldry plant (2), Downstream processes (3) and lignite terminals (4) adjacent to Yallorn power station

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