The BioPower2Gas project launched by Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen is one of six projects that has been nominated for the prestigious 2018 RAAK award. The BioPower2Gas project nominated for the 2018 RAAK award involves a consortium of knowledge institutes (Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen, Wageningen Environmental Research, New Energy Coalition and the University of Groningen), SMEs (BioClear Earth, Dirkse Milieu Techniek and Enki Energy) and major industrial partners (GasTerra, Gasunie and Enexis) that are working together closely to develop a possible solution for energy volatility.
The Netherlands is set to increase and improve its use of solar and wind energy. However, wind and sunshine are not always present. And if the wind is blowing or the sun is shining, it will not always be when we require the most energy. How do we make sure that energy is available when we need it?
Earthquake-free natural gas
Researchers at Hanze University of Applied Sciences have developed a laboratory-scale method that uses hydrogen to facilitate the conversion of electricity into wind solar gas, which is green methane. This gas is exactly the same as natural gas, but it does not cause earthquakes because it is not extracted from the bottom of the sea or from the earth. Electrolysis converts solar and wind energy into green hydrogen: ‘power-to-gas’. Micro-organisms are then used to convert this hydrogen into green methane or wind solar gas. To convert the hydrogen into wind solar gas, the micro-organisms need carbon dioxide, a notorious greenhouse gas. The approach chosen kills three birds with one stone: green electricity is buffered, carbon dioxide is stored, and Dutch knowledge and expertise in relation to gas, natural gas as well as biogas are put to good use. BioPower2Gas is one way in which a sustainable energy supply could be achieved within the Netherlands in future.The project is being led by Dr Jan-Peter Nap, a professor of Life Sciences and Sustainable Energy at Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen’s Centre of Expertise Energy.
The RAAK award
The winners of the RAAK award are Dutch universities of applied sciences that are conducting authoritative practice-oriented research. The winner of the 2018 RAAK award will be announced at the congress organised by the taskforce of the innovation alliance foundation SIA (Stichting Innovatie Alliantie), which will take place in Nieuwegein on 15 November 2018.
©Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen 2018