Florida’s First-of-its-Kind Clean Hydrogen Project Reaches Historic Milestone
By Space Coast Daily // October 15, 2023
expected to be complete by the end of the year
JUNO BEACH, FLORIDA – Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) announced that the first-of-its-kind clean hydrogen pilot project in Florida reached a significant construction milestone this month – the production of hydrogen.
FPL’s Cavendish NextGen Hydrogen Hub will help the company explore using clean hydrogen to offset the use of natural gas to run a traditional power plant. Built with state-of-the-art technology, the hydrogen hub pilot project draws from Florida’s most abundant natural resources – water and solar – to produce clean hydrogen.
“Hydrogen is a ‘no brainer’ for Florida,” said Dr. Arif Sarwat, eminent scholar chair professor at Florida International University and director of the FPL-FIU solar facility.
“As the most abundant element on earth it can be stored as an energy source that can be used whether or not the sun is shining.”
As the FPL Cavendish Solar Energy Center operates, a portion of solar energy will flow directly to the grid to serve customers, while the rest will go to power hydrogen production equipment, including a series of electrolyzers. Each electrolyzer splits water into its two basic elements: hydrogen and oxygen.
The oxygen is released harmlessly into the air, while the hydrogen will be compressed, stored and blended with natural gas, and used as fuel to produce electricity that will provide affordable and clean energy for FPL customers across the grid.
“What we discover could eventually help us hedge against the volatility and cost of fuel,” said Tim Oliver, vice president of development at FPL. “This is about creating more options for affordable and clean electricity for Florida.”
For this project, a 5% blend of hydrogen will be tested in one of three natural gas combustion turbines. The FPL Cavendish NextGen Hydrogen Hub will help the company maximize learning opportunities as it continues to pursue its Real Zero goal of decarbonizing its power-generation by 2045 at the latest.
Construction of the facility is expected to be complete by the end of the year.