The energy crisis is driving the growth of alternative energy sources. Hydrogen, the most abundant chemical element in the universe, continues to be in the industry’s spotlight as a promising solution, but not without controversy since its processing can generate even more emissions in the atmosphere.
However, the ” green hydrogen” movement aims to achieve a net result of zero greenhouse gas emissions. Contrary to blue hydrogen, in which natural gas deposits are used, green hydrogen is produced through clean energy sources, such as that generated by solar panels and wind farms.
More and more startups are emerging in this field where urgent solutions are needed. Mote is one of them, but it is still in its initial phase of capturing capital. For its part, Kore Infrastructure not only has investment funds but has also just opened its first research and development plant. The chosen location has been Downtown Los Angeles, in the heart of the city’s financial district.
The truth is that Kore has some advantages since it has been in ‘stealth’ mode for 14 years and it was not until April of this year when its top leaders finally took the step to make their project public.
“Before announcing Kore publicly, we wanted to make sure the technology we’ve been working on for years is up and running,” Steve Wirtel, vice president of business development, tells D+I. “Only potential clients and investors have been able to access our work, but now we are ready to talk about it officially.”
The company began its activities in 2008 when it began its research on the treatment of hydrogen and its generation from the use of organic matter. In a second phase, they began to project the manufacture of their first processing machine.
The machine did not see the light of day until 2015. Now its plant in Downtown Los Angeles has the potential to generate 1,000 kg of green hydrogen per day, which would require about 24 tons of organic matter. At the moment, the plant fulfills its role as a research and development center and its immediate objective is not to generate energy .
Kore’s machines use organic matter from nature itself: trees that have fallen or are in a state of rot, fruit shells, natural debris caused by fires, or even demolition debris. Right next to Kore is a plant that processes more than a ton a day of demolition debris. Half of this garbage is wood that can be used for Kore’s machines.
Pyrolysis: the key to the process
The Kore plant not only produces green hydrogen, but they are also capable of generating natural gas, biogas, and even coal in the solid state. All this is possible thanks to a chemical process known as pyrolysis.
This process consists of thermal degradation of organic matter, in this case, exposed to high temperatures and without the presence of oxygen. Temperatures can vary between 300 and 800 degrees.
Once the waste is subjected to pyrolysis, the gases and carbon remains are obtained. In this way, projects like the one proposed by Kore help remove the carbon dioxide produced by dead plantations.
The company’s plan is to market its machines in modules. This will encourage your customers to try this method of energy production, before committing to a large outlay. “Once customers realize their generation potential and there is a greater demand for hydrogen, they will have the possibility of acquiring more modules and expanding their plants”, confirms Wirtel.
Construction of its plant in Los Angeles was made possible by a $1.5 million grant from SoCalGas, the leading provider of natural gas in Southern California.
Now Kore has hired specialists from the Leidos company to prepare a report that guarantees the proper functioning of its technology. This report is expected to be ready this summer. After the publication of the document, the next objective of the company will be to raise more capital.