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German funding for solar methanol project for Port Augusta

Manufacturing News

Hamburg-based energy company Mabanaft has received a grant approval from the German Projektträger Jülich backing the construction of a new green methanol plant in Port Augusta, South Australia.

Together with Australian renewable energy company Vast, Mabanaft is developing plans to build a demonstration plant with a capacity of around 7,500 tonnes of green methanol per year.

Vast is developing a solar methanol plant at Port Augusta as well as a first-of-a-kind 30 MW / 288 MWh concentrated solar power (CSP) plant.

While the new European funding is EUR 12.4 million, the project has already attracted up to $19.48 million funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

Vast, which specialises in concentrated solar thermal power (CSP) energy systems, energy company Mabanaft plans to build a solar methanol plant with a capacity of approximately 7,500 tonnes per year and a 10 MW electrolyser.

The planned demonstration plant could be operational in the beginning of 2027, and could provide customers with green methanol based on renewable energy.

CEO of Vast Craig Wood said: “This is a significant milestone for Vast and for green fuel production globally.

“Solar Methanol produced at plants like SM1 has the potential to make a huge difference to the transport sector as it urgently looks at ways to decarbonise its fuels.

“The funding is a testament to Vast’s technology as well as our partners within the Solar Methanol Consortium.”

The initiative HyGATE intends to establish a German-Australian supply chain for green hydrogen and to strengthen cooperation between the two countries in the field of hydrogen technologies.

The aim is to supply existing and future customers with green methanol to support decarbonisation.

Director New Energy at Mabanaft Philipp Kroepels said: “With access to green methanol, our range of sustainable energy solutions for our customers would continue to grow.

“The funding agreement makes a crucial recognition and validation of our decarbonisation efforts and can be a strong contribution to strengthening Germany’s leading role in the global energy transition.”

Further reading:
Vast Solar’s concentrated solar go ahead follows solar methanol plant

Picture: ARENA

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