In this blog I have interviewed Brais Armiño Franco, a graduating student from the MSc. Renewable Energy programme. Brais is currently working on a research project with Instituto Superior Técnico, studying offshore hydrogen production and offloading through different energy carriers.
Brais fell in love with hydrogen one year ago, while pursuing his first year of Master’s at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm. He realised its necessity in achieving the fully decarbonised energy system that the world has been aspiring for. Hydrogen is paramount in eradicating CO2 emissions from hard-to-abate sectors such as chemical industry or heavy transportation. It can offer long-term storage for countries with big seasonal renewable energy intermittency and is also the only energy vector that can transport green energy across continents. This potential of H2 is what got Brais on board!
This project aims to study the different possibilities of producing hydrogen in offshore platforms with energy coming from offshore wind farms and its consequent transportation to shore. I study the different production methods and offloading technologies, as a result of which I provide a set of recommendations that can help the decision-makers to choose one or other pathway depending on the final applications of the produced hydrogen. The results I found show that offshore hydrogen will be competitive with other sustainable alternatives for a great variety of applications.
The Master’s provided me with several tools and platforms to arrive where I am today. When I was in Sweden, thanks to EIT InnoEnergy, I could attend the ‘Clean Energy Islands for the EU’ event held in Stockholm as the Hydrogen round table leader. I gained great experience and received several insights by talking to business leaders and politicians about their hydrogen needs. Secondly, the person that provided me this thesis, was a former EIT InnoEnergy student that I met at an EIT InnoEnergy event. Finally, I have to say that when I presented the collaboration to the company, being an EIT InnoEnergy student really helped me to gain their trust.
I am incredibly happy with the experience I have. Thanks to my learnings through the Master’s I have been able to understand both university and company requirements. The learnings I am taking with me from this experience will definitely open many doors in the future.
Jump in! The train is starting to speed up now. In the last few months, several projects related to hydrogen have been announced, and the EU has showed its full support for this technology. More companies and governments will be fostering the adoption of this technology and they will need passionate and EIT InnoEnergy-shaped minds!