The HyExpert district of Wartburg is examining its potential to develop into a green regional hydrogen economy by the summer of 2023. In association with the Unstrut-Hainich district, it is one of 30 winning regions out of 119 applicants to be recognized by the HyLand federal funding programme by the Federal Ministry for Digital and Transport.

On 12 May, the designation as a HyExpert region with a funding amount of around 400,000 euros was personally presented to district administrator Reinhard Krebs by the Federal Minister of Transport, Volker Wissing.

The objective of the funding project is to develop an overall concept on the potential of a regional green hydrogen economy in the districts of Wartburg and Unstrut-Hainich. This will examine the following aspects of the hydrogen issue in detail:

  • Suitable locations for renewable energies and hydrogen production
  • Logistics concept for the distribution, storage and supply of hydrogen
  • Requirements and application areas in the mobility sector (public transport, logistics, intralogistics aviation) as well as the industrial sector

These three areas will be brought together in a comprehensive energy system model and evaluated technically as well as economically, in order to depict and prioritise potential and useful scenarios. As a result, concrete pilot projects will also be identified, which will also be eligible for concept-based funding applications if necessary.

In addition to the focus on hydrogen use in the mobility area, strategic topics are also to be incorporated and addressed by the study, necessary for establishing a hydrogen economy. These include legal queries, safety aspects, worker qualifications as well as the integration of research and development in the region.

A project consortium comprised of Triveda GmbH (Erfurt), EurA AG (Zella-Mehlis) and Fraunhofer UMSICHT (Oberhausen) was tasked with conducting the feasibility study. All three are very familiar with hydrogen and renewable energy systems as well as current developments in Thüringia.

The exchange of ideas and collaboration with other relevant players and networks will be intensified and expanded, also with a view to a coordinated and efficient future hydrogen infrastructure. This includes other hydrogen regions of the HyLand programme and other initiatives, particularly in Thüringia and bordering districts in Hesse as well as existing regional networks such as the Thüringer Alliance for Hydrogen in Industry(Thüringer Allianz für Wasserstoff in der Industrie – ThAWI) and the ‘h2well’ WIR! region.

For information purposes about the progress of the development of the HyExpert project in the districts of Wartburg and Unstrut-Hainich, a website and social media channels will soon be constructed.

Image source: Franz