The light-filled Innovision Center was bustling with participants after numerous representatives from business, politics and research took up the invitation from the district of Neustadt an der Waldnaab to attend the event. The aim of the information evening was the presentation of the NEW HyPerspectives project and the ongoing effort to further promote and establish hydrogen as an energy carrier of the future.

eputy District Administrator Albert Nickl introduced the event after opening remarks with words of appreciation for the achievements of all involved and gave the stage to the speakers with a motivating, “There is still a lot to do in the future!”. Among the speakers were Alexander Gehling (NOW GmbH), Prof. Dr. Raphael Lechner (Institut für Energietechnik), Sebastian Kopp (OM-Netzwerk GmbH), Annabelle Forster (Watson Farley & Williams ), Ronald Behrend (ÜBZO), Maximilian Schinhammer (Institut für Energietechnik), Dr.- Ing. Andy Gradel (Institute for Water and Energy Management at Hof University of Applied Sciences/BtX energy).

Prof. Dr. Raphael Lechner first explained the project background and introduced the service providers involved as well as the feasibility study in the final report. Sebastian Kopp then illustrated the public relations activities undertaken in his presentation. As one of the other main topics, the focus was on the legal framework for green hydrogen, which was explained in a comprehensible manner by legal expert Annabelle Forster. Ronald Behrend explained to an attentive audience why the reorganization of apprenticeship occupations is indispensable to prepare junior staff for the developments of the next 15 years and which occupational group is particularly affected. The highlight on the agenda was the presentation of the feasibility study by Maximilian Schinhammer. With an impulse lecture on the subject of hydrogen from biomass, Dr.-Ing. Andy Gradel proved his spontaneity by swapping the guest area for the podium at the request of Prof. Dr. Raphael Lechner.

In order to achieve the self-set goals according to schedule, one of the next steps will be to expand the inter-municipal cooperation with the city of Weiden and the district of Tirschenreuth to the northern Upper Palatinate level. “Ultimately, tackling things ourselves is the best way to achieve the region’s goals. That you tackle in those areas where you can make a difference yourself,” emphasised Deputy District Administrator Albert Nickl in his closing remarks. In a relaxed atmosphere and accompanied by finger food, the evening came to a close with a final networking event. Lively conversations and productive exchanges among the guests rounded off the successful proceedings of a successful event.
A comprehensive final report was presented to the guests in printed form. This will be available on the website of the district office and will provide all interested parties with detailed information and recommendations for action on the topic. The final report will soon be available (in German) here.

Background information:
As one of just a few districts in Germany, the district of Neustadt an der Waldnaab qualified with its HyPerspectives project within the framework of the federal government’s HyLand competition. After suitable starting points for hydrogen technology in the region have already been identified in the HyStarter phase, the Expert phase focuses on the creation of an overall concept for a regional hydrogen economy. The development of the Neustadt an der Waldnaab region as a hydrogen region is being funded by the Federal Ministry of Digital and Transport (Bundesministerium für Digitales und Verkehr) within the framework of the National Innovation Programme Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology (NIP2) in the HyExpert phase with around 400,000 euros. The funding guideline is coordinated by NOW GmbH and implemented by Project Management Jülich (PtJ).

Image credits: District Office of Neustadt an der Waldnaab