Samson Controls Alkaline Electrolysers: Optimization of Electrolyser with FOCUS-1

Due to the demand in hydrogen increasing, there has been a spike in the market for alkaline electrolysers. In combination with their growing use, there is also a requirement for optimisation in electrolyser performance. This case study relates to the use of a smart meter valve in this application and is based on proven experience with one of the biggest electrolyser manufacturers in the world. This project proves that the smart meter valve’s added functionality creates an ideal opportunity in alkaline electrolysers to not only reduce cost and improve functionality but also enhance system performance.

In alkaline electrolysis, hydrogen is generated by splitting water molecules (H2O) into Hydrogen (H2) and Oxygen (O2), this is done by applying a voltage on two electrodes inserted in a water basin.

The water needs to be conductive, to allow the electrons to flow from one electrode to the other. The optimum conductivity is achieved by blending the correct amount potassium hydroxide (KOH) and demineralised water.

Currently the KOH concentration is measured by concentration sensors or deduced by Coriolis mass flowmeters. In both cases their output values go to a PLC, which then operates a valve that controls the inflow of demineralized water in the electrolyser. As the circulation flow of the water/ KOH mixture needs to be monitored a flowmeter and a temperature sensor will also be required.

The FOCUS-1 has a combination of ultrasonic flowmeter, temperature and pressure sensors all integrated with a control valve and powerful processing, data storage and control capacity, the complexity of this application goes away. For this application the FOCUS-1 can provide a truly single device solution as it has the capacity to perform the flow control and KOH concentration measurement.

For flow control the integrated sensors are paced at 10 Hz, the in-built (PID) control algorithm within the FOCUS-1 can modulate the control valve accurately and efficiently resulting in corresponding precise control.

For KOH concentration measurement is an integrated standard feature that is generated by smart combination of available sensor signals. This function is  fast, i.e. 10 Hz,  very accurate (<0,4% relative uncertainty) and comes as standard feature of the FOCUS-1.

Benefits:

- Comprehensive control and monitoring capabilities
- Improved efficiency of electrolyser operation via accurate, stable, and fast flow control
- Electrolyser optimisation via direct KOH concentration measurement
- An all-in-one solution significantly reduces complexity, cost, and installation.
- Additional data insights allow for high uptime of electrolyser.

Tel:             01737 766391
Email:         sales-uk@samsongroup.com 
Website:     uk.samsongroup.com


Published: 23rd April 2024

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