Western Australia-based gold and nickel explorer Province Resources last month unveiled its HyEnergy Renewable Hydrogen Project, including plans for a 1 GW wind and solar PV facility to be established in the Gascoyne Region of Western Australia. The energy from that project will be used to produce approximately 60,000 tons of green hydrogen per year or up to 300,000 tons of green ammonia.
The Perth-based company, which enjoyed a major boost to its stock price in the wake of the HyEnergy announcement, this week revealed that within four weeks it will deploy a monitoring station at the proposed site to accelerate data collection required to support feasibility studies.
Province Resources managing director David Frances said the data collected will enable the proposed solar array network and wind turbines to be optimized prior to the final project scope and scale decision point.
“It is great to be able to hit the ground running on the exciting HyEnergy green hydrogen project,” he said. “I look forward to progressing the feasibility studies as quickly as possible, whilst also planning the initial fieldwork programs to assess the salt, potash and mineral sands target areas within the greater Gascoyne Project.”
Province has declared the proposed location, near Canarvon in the state’s north-west, is ideal for the development of a large-scale renewable energy facility but said the monitoring station, provided by Sydney-based technology company Fulcrum3D, will collect preliminary wind and solar data every 10 minutes within the project area to assess the wind and solar resource potential.
Data already provided by Province indicates Canarvon’s solar is amongst the highest irradiance in the world, averaging 211 sunny days per year with an average solar exposure of 22 Mj or 6.24 kWh per day. And, due to being on the western edge of the continent, it has excellent wind resources.
The company said it will utilize Fulcrum3D’s Sodar (Sonic Detection and Ranging) weather monitoring system.
Fulcrum3D general manager Jo Hume told pv magazine reliable data is essential for effective project design and management – from both a technical and financial point of view. “Accurate resource assessment for wind and solar energy developments is critical for bankability and risk management and for ensuring optimal power plant design,” she said.
Province said it will look to commence feasibility studies for both renewable power generation and green hydrogen production within the next 12-18 months.
The company isn’t the only enterprise eyeing the development of a renewable hydrogen project in Western Australia. The state government has given environmental approval to the first stage of the Asian Renewable Energy Hub, a 15 GW hybrid solar and wind plant. The approval is a massive step forward for the project, which is backed by Sydney-based developer CWP Renewables and Macquarie Group.
Hydrogen Renewables Australia and Denmark Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) have also proposed the development of a renewable hydrogen production facility near Kalbarri. They have detailed plans for up to 5 GW of combined solar and wind projects to supply it.
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