Hazer Commercial Demonstration Plant

February 21st, 2022

Hazer Commercial Demonstration Plant

This project, located near Perth, is a commercial demonstration of the Hazer production technology that can convert methane feedstocks, through the use of an iron ore process catalyst, into hydrogen and synthetic graphite.

Main proponents:

Hazer Group Limited

Main end-use classification:

Focus on electricity/microgrid applications

Status:

Under construction – first commissioning of the plant is anticipated to begin after construction and installation of the initial carbon steel cold reactor planned by mid-2022

Estimated cost:

AUD$23-25 million

Other involvement:

 

Production details:

Hydrogen production – Approximately 100 tonnes per annum capacity

Location:

Western Australia, Australia

Announced funding:

AUD$9.41 million – Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA)

Project description

West Australian based technology developer, Hazer Group Limited, is to build and operate a demonstration plant near Perth, Western Australia, to progress their proprietary technology that can convert methane feedstocks into hydrogen and synthetic graphite.

The demonstration plant has a planned (operating) duration of around three years and would have the capacity to produce approximately 100 tonnes of hydrogen per annum and (reportedly) 380 tonnes of synthetic graphite per annum.

The Hazer process uses methane (bio-methane in the case of this specific project) as a feedstock which, through the use of an iron ore process catalyst, can be converted into hydrogen and synthetic graphite (in which the carbon contained in the biogas feedstock is ‘trapped’). Produced hydrogen is initially intended to be used for electricity/microgrid applications.

The technology originated with research at the University of Western Australia and the Hazer Group was established in 2010 to commercialise the technology. Since 2016, the Hazer Group has been in a research partnership with the University of Sydney. A Fluidised Bed Reactor (FBR) pilot plant was relocated from Sydney to Kwinana (south of Perth) in 2019.

The demonstration plant is to be co-located at the Water Corporation’s Woodman Point Wastewater Treatment plant in Munster about 30 kilometres south-south-west of Perth. Biogas produced at the waste treatment plant will be used as feedstock for the demonstration plant. It is estimated that the plant can utilise around two million standard cubic metres of biogas that would otherwise be flared.

The project scope will include a stationary hydrogen fuel-cell power generation system, which will allow the plant to generate its own renewable power by using some of the produced hydrogen.

In July 2020, the Hazer Group advised of the final investment decision to proceed with the project and of the appointment of the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor (the Perth-based Primero Group).

The capital cost of the demonstration plant is estimated at between AUD$23-25 million.

First commissioning of the plant is now anticipated to take place after construction and installation of the initial carbon steel cold reactor planned by mid-2022.  Production operations is anticipated to commence before the end of 2022.

Milestones

May 2019: Announcement that the Hazer Group and the Water Corporation had entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate in principle to explore the development of a 100 tonne per annum hydrogen production plant at the Woodman Point Wastewater Treatment Plant.

September 2019: ARENA announced it has approved up to AUD$9.41 million in funding to the Hazer Group to support the construction and operation of the demonstration plant.

March 2020: The Hazer Group announced that it had executed a funding agreement with ARENA for up to AUD$9.41 million to support the capital construction and operation of the demonstration plant. Additional information regarding the operation of key aspects of the funding agreement was also supplied by the Hazer Group in March 2020.

May 2020: The Hazer Group announced that it had executed a binding Gas Supply Agreement and Collaboration Deed with the Water Corporation for the supply of gas and co-location of the demonstration plant (with delivery of the biogas scheduled to begin in 2021 and continue for three years).

July 2020: The Hazer Group announced a final investment decision to proceed with the project and the appointment of EPC contractor.

March 2021: Earthworks commenced.

 

Updated: February 2022