Hanze University of Applied Sciences' BioPower2Gas project is one of six projects nominated for the prestigious RAAK award 2018. The RAAK award is aimed at prominent, practice-oriented research carried out at a Dutch University of Applied Sciences.
Microorganisms converting hydrogen and carbon dioxide into methane
The Netherlands is using more solar and wind energy and using it more efficiently; but sometimes there's no wind or sun. And when it is windy or sunny, it's not always at the times when we need energy the most. How can we make sure that energy is available when we need it? The nominated project BioPower2Gas is working towards a possible solution by cooperating closely within a consortium of knowledge institutions (Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen, Wageningen Environmental Research, New Energy Coalition, University of Groningen), SMEs (BioClear Earth, Dirkse Milieu Techniek, Enki Energy) and large industrial partners (GasTerra, Gasunie, Enexis). The nominated project is being led by Dr Jan-Peter Nap, lecturer in ‘Life Sciences and Sustainable Energy’ at the Centre of Expertise for Energy, Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Groningen.
Earthquake-free (natural) gas
Researchers at the Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Groningen, have developed a method in their laboratory to convert electricity into wind-sun-gas efficiently via hydrogen by using microorganisms; this is green methane. This is precisely the same gas as natural gas but its production will not cause earthquakes because it does not come out of the ground. Tests for upscaling this process are currently ongoing.
Solar and wind energy being converted into green hydrogen by means of electrolysis, or ‘power-to-gas’: this is existing technology. This hydrogen is then converted into green methane or wind-sun-gas by means of microorganisms. The way in which hydrogen is fed to the microorganisms proved to be important. The microorganisms need carbon dioxide, the infamous greenhouse gas, for converting it to wind-sun-gas. By and large, the approach chosen kills three birds with one stone: green electricity buffering, carbon dioxide storage and effective use of Dutch expertise and skills in the fields of (natural) gas and biogas. BioPower2Gas is one of the options for achieving a sustainable energy supply in the Netherlands of the future.
The RAAK award offers a platform to prominent, practice-oriented research performed by universities of applied sciences. In addition to the prize of €10,000, the winning project will achieve even more exposure by being the subject of a film. The winner of the RAAK award 2018 will be announced at the big conference to be held by coordinating body SIA (Stichting Innovatie Alliantie (Foundation Innovation Alliance) on 15 November 2018 in Nieuwegein.
© New Energy Coalition/Hanze University of Applied Sciences, Groningen, 2018