28.03.2024 - EWE AG

Hydrogen storage facility in Rüdersdorf can be connected to the hydrogen core network

• EWE and ONTRAS Gastransport sign Memorandum of Understanding
• Realization dependent on technical feasibility and final investment decisions (FID)

Leipzig/Oldenburg, 28 March 2024. ONTRAS Gastransport intends to connect the Rüdersdorf gas storage site of the energy service provider EWE to the emerging hydrogen launch grid in eastern Germany. As a first step, Peter Schmidt, Managing Director of EWE GASSPEICHER GmbH, and Ralph Bahke, Managing Director of ONTRAS, signed a formal agreement.

"Without high-performance hydrogen storage systems, the market ramp-up for hydrogen will not work. That's why we have to think about storage from the outset in terms of infrastructure. The Memorandum of Understanding with ONTRAS Gastransport is an important milestone in this direction," says Peter Schmidt.

"Our hydrogen start-up network for eastern Germany is an important part of the H2 core network that is being developed throughout Germany. With the possible integration of Rüdersdorf into this starting grid, supplemented by the connection to our grid for the hydrogen storage facility that is currently being built there as part of the Bad Lauchstädt Energy Park, flexibility and security of supply will increase," adds Ralph Bahke.

Rüdersdorf: EWE gas storage site has potential for integration into the H2 core network

The connection of hydrogen storage facilities such as EWE's in Rüdersdorf creates additional system stability and security of supply and enables the efficient integration of volatile green hydrogen generation units. This was preceded by various market inquiries on hydrogen storage. These have shown that there is a great need for hydrogen storage facilities in eastern Germany in the future.

EWE's Rüdersdorf gas storage site is geographically ideally located in the Berlin metropolitan region and to the hydrogen pipelines for developing the hydrogen core network planned throughout Germany. It is also the first storage site for import and production projects around Lubmin, as well as for hydrogen from Poland and via the Northern Baltic Hydrogen Corridor to Germany. As a result, the storage facility can become a key factor for a secure supply to the capital region as well as to the PCK Schwedt refinery and the ArcelorMittal steelplant in Eisenhüttenstadt.

Perspective: Connection to international hydrogen markets

EWE is currently testing hydrogen storage on a small scale in Rüdersdorf. In the future, it is quite conceivable that the location will play a role in the expansion of the hydrogen storage infrastructure. However, the regulatory framework and funding programs are still lacking. The feasibility for the construction of new caverns must also first be reviewed by experts. "Despite these challenges, we are moving forward, are already testing the operation of an underground hydrogen cavern on a small scale and are also evaluating the conversion or construction of new caverns at this location," explains Peter Schmidt.

ONTRAS wants to connect this hydrogen storage facility with the H2 start-up network being built in eastern Germany. It is an essential part of the hydrogen core network. Specifically, the connection to the IPCEI (Important Project of Common European Interest) "doing hydrogen" would take place, the pipelines of which are to run between Rostock, the Leipzig-Halle region and the Berlin area to Eisenhüttenstadt. At the end of February, the EU Commission gave the green light for aid for this project as well as for "Green Octopus Central Germany". Both IPCEIs of the ONTRAS H2 launch network have thus been notified and the way is clear for national funding.

In addition, connections from "doing hydrogen" to other hydrogen pipelines of the future Germany-wide H2 core network, such as the FLOW project of the gas transmission system operators GASCADE, ONTRAS and terranets bw, can open up a wide range of possible uses for the future hydrogen storage facility.

The partners' projects are still subject to technical feasibility and the corresponding final investment decisions (FID) of the partners.

Foto von Pressesprecherin Nadine Auras
Nadine Auras Press Officer


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