Denham's renewable hydrogen microgrid report unveiled, showcasing Australia's first operational system

Australia's first operational renewable hydrogen microgrid in Denham, integrating solar and hydrogen technologies to reduce diesel use, is providing insights for future hydrogen projects in remote areas.

Horizon hydrogen denham
Denham power station and hydrogen plant. Image: Horizon Power

Western Australia's Cook Government has released a Public Knowledge Sharing Report on the Denham Renewable Hydrogen Microgrid. Located in Denham, the microgrid integrates a 704-kilowatt solar farm, a 348-kilowatt hydrogen electrolyser, and a 100-kilowatt fuel cell, offering an innovative alternative to diesel generators and aiming to offset 140,000 litres of diesel annually.

The project, backed by the Western Australian Government through the Renewable Hydrogen Fund, Horizon Power, and ARENA's Advancing Renewables Program, serves as a pilot for future hydrogen projects in remote microgrids.

The microgrid includes:

  • A dedicated solar farm (0.704 MW DC)
  • A hydrogen electrolyser (348 kW) producing hydrogen at 60 Nm³/hr
  • Hydrogen storage tanks (300 Bar, 3477 Nm³)
  • A hydrogen compressor (2-stage)
  • A hydrogen fuel cell (100 kW)
  • Control systems and water storage facilities
  • A meter on the hydrogen fuel cell output to track hydrogen energy production, with an estimated minimum output of 220 MWh per year

The facility is expected to produce around 13,000 kilograms of hydrogen per year, providing renewable energy equivalent to the consumption of 100 residential houses in Denham. When solar generation is not available, Horizon Power will utilise the stored hydrogen through the 100 kW fuel cell to ensure a constant and reliable renewable power supply, supplementing the existing diesel and wind generation.

Acting Energy Minister Dr Tony Buti noted, "This report confirms the great opportunity for hydrogen to play a role in our State's energy transition."

Construction of the project was completed in August 2022, pre-commissioning in September 2022, and commissioning by September 2023. Operational handover occurred in February 2024.

Horizon Power will monitor the plant's performance, aiming to share operational insights with the broader industry over the next 12 months. To date, the plant has produced over 4,000 kg of hydrogen and generated 40 MWh of electricity from hydrogen, along with 1,800 MWh from the solar farm.

Premier Roger Cook commented, "I want to see WA become a renewable energy powerhouse, and hydrogen will have an important role to play in our clean energy future."

"The knowledge we've gained through this pilot project will help to guide future remote uses of renewable hydrogen across WA and the rest of the nation," added Premier Cook.

For further details, you can visit:

Industry Partners