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Hydrogen technology – a future market segment worth billions

The importance of hydrogen as an energy carrier is expected to increase considerably over the next twenty years and play a key role in the world’s energy supply by 2050. An industrial sector offering technology, infrastructure and services related to the use of hydrogen will evolve alongside this growth. The Biotechnology Forum in Freiburg on 19th September will focus on the potential future role of biotechnologically produced hydrogen.

As things currently stand, there is a bright prospect for hydrogen and fuel cell technologies: Baden-Württemberg alone is expected to generate a sales volume of up to 4.5 billion euros a year by 2030. The potential of these technologies is expected to rise even more steeply up to 2050, accounting for a sales volume of around 25 billion euros a year. This emerging energy sector is expected to provide jobs for around 100,000 people by 2050. 

These are all perspectives from the study “Energieträger der Zukunft – Potenziale der Wasserstofftechnologie in Baden-Württemberg “ (Energy carriers of the future – potential for hydrogen technology in Baden-Württemberg), which was carried out jointly by the Baden-Württemberg Centre for Solar and Hydrogen Research and the Weiterbildungszentrum Brennstoffzelle Ulm (WBZU; Ulm-based Fuel Cell Training Centre).

In the research stage: hydrogen produced with biotechnological methods

The study assumes that hydrogen will almost exclusively be produced by way of electrolysis using electrical power produced by wind power and photovoltaics systems. It also identifies biotechnology as a major contributor to hydrogen production, as organisms and cellular molecules are in principle suitable for releasing hydrogen from water.

The workshop entitled “Bacteria, algae, molecule systems – new paths towards the energy carrier hydrogen” will focus on the different ways that hydrogen can be produced and compare biotechnological hydrogen production with hydrogen production using electrolysis. The workshop is part of the Biotechnology Forum that will be held in the Freiburg Concert Hall on 19th September.

Four experts will provide summaries of their state-of-the-art research results:

  • Dr. Christopher Hebling, Head of Energy Technology, Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE: 
"The role of hydrogen as energy carrier with regard to mobility and energy supply” 
  • Anette Franz, KIT, Engler Bunte Institute, Chemical Energy Carriers – Fuel Cell Technology: 
"Microalgae and how they can produce hydrogen"
  • Iosif Mariakakis, M. Sc. Environmental Technology, University of Stuttgart, Institute of Sanitary Engineering, Water Quality and Solid Waste Management: “Fermentative hydrogen production”
  • Prof. Dr. Thomas Happe, University of Bochum, Institute of Biology and Biotechnology, Department of Plant Biochemistry, Photobiotechnology workgroup: “Solar energy conversion and hydrogen production in biological and semiartificial systems”

Click here to register for this workshop and obtain information about a biotechnology topic with huge future potential. Participation is free of charge.

Website address: https://www.biooekonomie-bw.de/en/articles/news/hydrogen-technology-a-future-market-segment-worth-billions