Alternate Sources of Energy: Wind with Hydrogen

Norwegian island being used to test clean energy system
AP WorldStream via COMTEX
NewsTeam | CBS [MarketWatch] | POSTED: 04.27.04 @08:52
OSLO, Norway, Apr 27, 2004 — Wind power and other alternatives to fossil and nuclear fuels have one major drawback – they depend on nature to generate electricity.

A Norwegian company, Norsk Hydro ASA, presented a project Tuesday to overcome the problem of storing electricity when the wind dies, the sea calms, or the sun doesn’t shine

It built two 600-kilowatt wind turbines and connected them with a hydrogen generator and a fuel cell to provide electricity for 10 homes on Utsira, a tiny town of 240 people on a wind-swept island about 18 kilometers (11 miles) from the mainland. Utsira is 320 kilometers (200 miles) west of Oslo.

When it’s very windy, not unusual for Utsira, the wind turbines will produce excess power to produce hydrogen fuel in a process known as electrolysis – which splits water into hydrogen and oxygen.

That fuel will in turn power a hydrogen combustion engine and a fuel cell to generate electricity when the wind is not blowing.