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Axens and Chiyoda ink cooperation agreement for hydrogen carrier technologies

| By Mary Bailey

Axens (Rueil-Malmaison, France) announced the signature of a Joint Commercial Cooperation Agreement (JCCA) with Chiyoda Corp. (Yokohama, Japan). The purpose of this cooperation is to facilitate hydrogen supply chain projects via methylcyclohexane (MCH) (1) as Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carrier (LOHC), and promote a combination of Axens’ Toluene Hydrogenation technology and Chiyoda’s SPERA Hydrogen technology.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the size of the hydrogen economy could be as large as 150 million tons annually in 2030. The hydrogen long distance transportation from favorable areas of production to main consumption countries remains a key challenge to be addressed from technical and economical point of view.

Chiyoda’s SPERA Hydrogen technology utilizes MCH as a LOHC and with Chiyoda’s proprietary dehydrogenation catalyst, it produces hydrogen and toluene from MCH with high conversion and high selectivity.

Axens’ Toluene Hydrogenation technology uses high performance homogeneous catalysis resulting in high purity MCH production from toluene and hydrogen with optimized energy efficiency. This technology is backed up by Axens unmatched experience in the field of hydrogenation through process optimization and extensive catalyst development. 

The combination of both technologies through the JCCA will:

  • bring strong synergies allowing fast track approach for project implementation; and
  • provide a single point of contact to reduce the burden of customer coordination between two licensors.

This JCCA based on the usage of proven technologies using MCH as a LOHC, will help the emergence of the hydrogen market while mitigating:

  • issues linked to safety and difficulties of  hydrogen transport and storage; and
  • technology cost intensity by using existing infrastructure, regulations, and standards.

“Signing this alliance will enable Chiyoda and Axens to jointly develop worldwide hydrogen markets thus accelerating and scaling up the hydrogen supply chain, contributing to a long-term CO2 emission reduction, to be on track to net-zero,” said Patrick Sarrazin, Executive Vice President New Development & Transformation at Axens.