Workshop on the sustainable use of domestic carbon resources

Technology development can contribute significantly to an efficient and environmentally friendly use of domestic carbon resources. This is the result of a two-day workshop with participants from China, Poland, the Czech Republic and Germany, which took place at the invitation of the Fraunhofer Institute for Microstructure of Materials and Systems IMWS in Berlin.

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Global Debut: Hydrogen energy storage in caverns

As part of the HYPOS research initiative, on May 1st, a pilot project for the underground storage of hydrogen in Central Germany will get underway. The aim of the project “H2 Research Cavern” is the development and regulatory approval of a research platform for the storage of hydrogen in a salt cavern.

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Safe and lightweight high-pressure tanks for the storage and transport of green hydrogen

Green hydrogen plays a key role for the energy revolution because it can comprise the unifying element between the electricity, mobility, and industrial sectors. For this potential to be revealed, efficient processes for the storage and transportation of green hydrogen are necessary. The four project partners Hexagon Purus GmbH, RayScan Technologies GmbH, the Fraunhofer Institute for Microstructure of Materials and Systems IMWS, and the Fraunhofer Institute for Mechanics of Materials IWM are working together on the development of safe and lightweight high-pressure tanks in which hydrogen can be stored and transported at an operating pressure of up to 1000 bar.

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OCP Group and Fraunhofer IMWS sign a partnership agreement for the creation of a world-class research laboratory in Morocco

The Fraunhofer IMWS in Halle (Saale) and the Fraunhofer IGB in Stuttgart, Straubing and Leuna are intensifying their cooperation with partners in Morocco.

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Conductive polymer composites for electrolysis

Innovative composite materials could be more cost-effective and efficient than previously used materials. The Fraunhofer IMWS wants to make them ready for use in water electrolysis.

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Electrolysis test platform in Leuna starting in 2019

The new plant will combine innovative technologies for producing green hydrogen with an excellent infrastructure of gas pipelines and gas storage systems.

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Successful participation at Hannover Messe fair

The Fraunhofer IMWS presented its portfolio relating to water electrolysis.

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Chemical Conversion

We are currently focusing on two areas in the Chemical Conversion Processes business unit. The Carbon Cycle Technologies group is working on the efficient, resource-saving, and climate-neutral use of carbon resources, and is thus contributing to the development of efficient and sustainable solutions to pressing issues in society. The goal is to integrate sources of carbon back into the process chains (chemical recycling) using new technologies available for large-scale use, and therefore to close the carbon cycle. At the same time, the economically competitive production of mass products (such as basic chemicals, plastics) and high-priced special products (such as carbon fibers, extraction substances) based on domestic carbon resources should be made possible, including waste materials present in a wide range of qualities like plastic and biomass waste.

The links to the production and storage of electricity from renewable sources and of green hydrogen as well as the recycling of waste containing carbon, all of which are important building blocks for a circular carbon economy, will also be examined.

The Water Electrolysis group deals primarily with optimizing the generation and storage of hydrogen. The objective is to reduce the cost of investment and the operating costs to increase the competitiveness of water electrolysis in comparison to conventional hydrogen production processes such as steam reforming.

Since the production and storage of highly pure hydrogen places substantial requirements on the materials used, excellent know-how in material characterization and diagnostics is an important prerequisite. With the help of electrical, electrochemical, and microstructural processes, we analyze and characterize the materials and components used to produce and store hydrogen. The knowledge gained is used to optimize existing materials and develop new, more efficient materials.

We also study and analyze the technical and economic relevance of various electrolysis systems to make them ready for the market by conducting supplemental research and development.

We offer:

Carbon Cycle Technologies

Integrated technology development for the effective and sustainable use of domestic carbon resources

New and advanced processes for extraction and solvolysis, pyrolysis, gasification, gas purification and waste water treatment, CO2-tolerant and CO2-based syntheses, waste preparation, conveying and feeding systems for coal and waste materials

Analysis of carbon resources and their conversion products

Pilot-scale systems for testing the various substances used based on different conversion concepts and under near-industrial conditions

Supplementary research for model-based (predictive) design, control, and regulation; new material and process sensors for highly efficient control and regulation: integrated process chains for the carbon cycle; and  development and testing of alternative material systems in areas subject to high thermal and chemical stresses.

Hydrogen Technologies

Identification of the degradation behavior of stack components and the development of strategies for its minimization and prevention

Material benchmarks

Development and characterization of improved materials for water electrolysis

Microstructural evaluation of components for electrolyzers and transport containers

Evaluation of electrolyzers on an industrial scale

Reliability studies on power electronics and on the process and safety sensors