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Comment Sustainability

LSB Industries selects Bloom Energy to build 10-MW solid-oxide electrolyzer for large-scale green hydrogen production in Oklahoma

By Mary Page Bailey |

Bloom Energy (San Jose, Calif.) and LSB Industries, Inc (Oklahoma City, Okla.), a leading North American producer of industrial and agricultural chemicals, announced plans to install a 10 megawatt (MW) solid-oxide electrolyzer at LSB’s Pryor, Oklahoma facility. The project is expected to generate green hydrogen that will contribute to the synthesis of approximately 13,000 metric tons of zero-carbon ammonia per year.

Operating at superior efficiencies compared to PEM and alkaline electrolyzer technologies, Bloom Energy’s solid oxide electrolyzer is uniquely positioned to unlock clean, low-cost hydrogen at the scale needed for a net-zero economy. Bloom Energy’s high-temperature electrolyzer requires less energy to generate hydrogen than low-temperature electrolyzers on the market today. When integrated with the most energy efficient high-temperature processes like ammonia synthesis, which produces extra heat energy, Bloom’s electrolyzer is up to 30-40 percent more efficient than competing electrolyzer technologies, resulting in the lowest cost hydrogen for end customer use. With electricity accounting for up to 80 percent of the cost of hydrogen production through electrolysis, solid oxide electrolysis at scale offers a viable, cost-accessible pathway to hydrogen production. Further, clean hydrogen produced at LSB’s facility may qualify for federal incentive programs, such as those currently under evaluation by Congress.

“Achieving a net-zero future requires clean hydrogen at scale, and the collaboration between Bloom Energy and LSB is a milestone for both green hydrogen production and the decarbonization of an industry that’s vital to farmers and consumers alike,” said Rick Beuttel, vice president, hydrogen business, Bloom Energy. “We’re excited to collaborate with LSB to provide significant electrolysis efficiencies, demonstrating that zero-carbon fuels are available and accessible today.”

Ammonia is a crucial component in agricultural fertilizers, with 80 percent of ammonia production used to fertilize crops that will grow food necessary to feed the world. The vital production of ammonia, however, has historically been even more emissions-intensive than other hard-to-abate industrial sectors like cement or steel. The 10 MW solid oxide electrolyzer installation – which will contribute to making LSB’s Pryor facility the largest green ammonia production site in North America – will demonstrate the ability of hydrogen to decarbonize ammonia production and other industrial sectors, which are collectively responsible for more than one-third of global energy consumption.

ThyssenKrupp, a leading global technology, engineering, procurement, construction, and service provider to chemical plants, will co-develop the multi-phase project, developing an initial engineering design to convert a small portion of existing conventional (“gray”) ammonia capacity at LSB’s Pryor facility into green ammonia. Bloom Energy will then install, operate, and maintain the 10 MW electrolyzer at LSB’s Pryor facility, targeting hydrogen production to begin in 2023.

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