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Title: Production of Hydrogen at the Forecourt Using Off-Peak Electricity: June 2005 (Milestone Report)


This milestone report provides information about the production of hydrogen at the forecourt using off-peak electricity as well as the Hydrogen Off-Peak Electricity (HOPE) model.

Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
TRN: US200709%%514
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Resource Relation:
Related Information: Prepared for the U.S. Department of Energy Hydrogen, Fuel Cells and Infrastructure Technologies program in fulfillment of the FY 2005 NREL Milestone Final Report on the Design and Cost of Electrolysis Scenario Options
Country of Publication:
United States

Citation Formats

Levene, J. I.. Production of Hydrogen at the Forecourt Using Off-Peak Electricity: June 2005 (Milestone Report). United States: N. p., 2007. Web. doi:10.2172/899977.
Levene, J. I.. Production of Hydrogen at the Forecourt Using Off-Peak Electricity: June 2005 (Milestone Report). United States. doi:10.2172/899977.
Levene, J. I.. Thu . "Production of Hydrogen at the Forecourt Using Off-Peak Electricity: June 2005 (Milestone Report)". United States. doi:10.2172/899977.
title = {Production of Hydrogen at the Forecourt Using Off-Peak Electricity: June 2005 (Milestone Report)},
author = {Levene, J. I.},
abstractNote = {This milestone report provides information about the production of hydrogen at the forecourt using off-peak electricity as well as the Hydrogen Off-Peak Electricity (HOPE) model.},
doi = {10.2172/899977},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Feb 01 00:00:00 EST 2007},
month = {Thu Feb 01 00:00:00 EST 2007}

Technical Report:

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  • Nuclear energy can be used to produce hydrogen. The key strategic question is this: ''What are the early markets for nuclear hydrogen?'' The answer determines (1) whether there are incentives to implement nuclear hydrogen technology today or whether the development of such a technology could be delayed by decades until a hydrogen economy has evolved, (2) the industrial partners required to develop such a technology, and (3) the technological requirements for the hydrogen production system (rate of production, steady-state or variable production, hydrogen purity, etc.). Understanding ''early'' markets for any new product is difficult because the customer may not evenmore » recognize that the product could exist. This study is an initial examination of how nuclear hydrogen could be used in two interconnected early markets: the production of electricity for peak and intermediate electrical loads and spinning reserve for the electrical grid. The study is intended to provide an initial description that can then be used to consult with potential customers (utilities, the Electric Power Research Institute, etc.) to better determine the potential real-world viability of this early market for nuclear hydrogen and provide the starting point for a more definitive assessment of the concept. If this set of applications is economically viable, it offers several unique advantages: (1) the market is approximately equivalent in size to the existing nuclear electric enterprise in the United States, (2) the entire market is within the utility industry and does not require development of an external market for hydrogen or a significant hydrogen infrastructure beyond the utility site, (3) the technology and scale match those of nuclear hydrogen production, (4) the market exists today, and (5) the market is sufficient in size to justify development of nuclear hydrogen production techniques independent of the development of any other market for hydrogen. These characteristics make it an ideal early market for nuclear hydrogen.« less
  • A combined-cycle power plant is described that uses (1) heat from a high-temperature nuclear reactor to meet base-load electrical demands and (2) heat from the same high-temperature reactor and burning natural gas, jet fuel, or hydrogen to meet peak-load electrical demands. For base-load electricity production, fresh air is compressed; then flows through a heat exchanger, where it is heated to between 700 and 900 C by heat provided by a high-temperature nuclear reactor via an intermediate heat-transport loop; and finally exits through a high-temperature gas turbine to produce electricity. The hot exhaust from the Brayton-cycle gas turbine is then fedmore » to a heat recovery steam generator that provides steam to a steam turbine for added electrical power production. To meet peak electricity demand, the air is first compressed and then heated with the heat from a high-temperature reactor. Natural gas, jet fuel, or hydrogen is then injected into the hot air in a combustion chamber, combusts, and heats the air to 1300 C-the operating conditions for a standard natural-gas-fired combined-cycle plant. The hot gas then flows through a gas turbine and a heat recovery steam generator before being sent to the exhaust stack. The higher temperatures increase the plant efficiency and power output. If hydrogen is used, it can be produced at night using energy from the nuclear reactor and stored until needed. With hydrogen serving as the auxiliary fuel for peak power production, the electricity output to the electric grid can vary from zero (i.e., when hydrogen is being produced) to the maximum peak power while the nuclear reactor operates at constant load. Because nuclear heat raises air temperatures above the auto-ignition temperatures of the various fuels and powers the air compressor, the power output can be varied rapidly (compared with the capabilities of fossil-fired turbines) to meet spinning reserve requirements and stabilize the electric grid. This combined cycle uses the unique characteristics of high-temperature reactors (T>700 C) to produce electricity for premium electric markets whose demands can not be met by other types of nuclear reactors. It may also make the use of nuclear reactors economically feasible in smaller electrical grids, such as those found in many developing countries. The ability to rapidly vary power output can be used to stabilize electric grid performance-a particularly important need in small electrical grids.« less
  • This report describes and discusses the techniques and equipment that are available, or may shortly be available to meter the usage of electricity. An introductory section describes the rationale underlying the three pricing structures widely accepted by the industry, namely, straight energy metering, demand metering, and time-of-day metering. It describes the pricing structures used in some industrial applications that combine two or more of these pricing structures, and discusses some of the technical issues that may arise when these are introduced into domestic metering. A second section of the text classifies and describes the equipment which is available at presentmore » to perform metering functions. The report then proceeds to describe communication systems that could be used for meter reading, load control, and other functions. One-way and two-way systems are covered, and their technology, systems engineering, and relative advantages are described. Section five of the report describes equipment which is, or may shortly be available for specialized metering functions such as load research. The concluding section covers R and D recommendations.« less
  • This report demonstrates why a load-management agreement is the best rate format for customer thermal energy storage (TES) from electricity. The first section presents the basic operating and cost characteristics of TES systems as well as potential problems that affect rate setting. Then, the criteria for choosing a rate structure are put forth, and the various rate formats available are analyzed considering the above information. Finally, the means of achieving the maximum social benefits using a load-management agreement are explored.