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Hydrogen economy

POSCO, Doosan join hands on ammonia-fueled gas turbines

Instead of burning ammonia directly, the firms will decompose the compound into hydrogen for use by gas turbines

By Jul 19, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

A large-scale gas turbine manufactured by Doosan Heavy Industries. 
A large-scale gas turbine manufactured by Doosan Heavy Industries. 

POSCO and Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Co., the two key members of Korea’s ambitious green ammonia alliance formed last week, will develop and operate gas turbines using clean hydrogen produced from ammonia.

According to the industry on July 19, the two firms and the Research Institute of Industrial Science & Technology (RIST) together signed a partnership agreement to research and develop clean ammonia-based gas turbines.

Under the deal, POSCO will be in charge of producing and supplying ammonia, while RIST will develop an ammonia cracker that will decompose the ammonia compound into hydrogen and nitrogen.

Ammonia production and application are at the center of POSCO’s green hydrogen business model. 
Ammonia production and application are at the center of POSCO’s green hydrogen business model. 

Doosan Heavy will develop a combustor to burn the decomposed hydrogen and nitrogen, as well as a gas turbine that can be run using the combusted hydrogen gas.  

POSCO and Doosan Heavy representatives at the partnership agreement meeting on July 19.
POSCO and Doosan Heavy representatives at the partnership agreement meeting on July 19.

Ammonia, a compound of hydrogen and nitrogen, is an ideal “carrier” of hydrogen due to its practicality in storing and transporting hydrogen. The compound can store 1.7 times more hydrogen than when transported as liquefied hydrogen, given the same-sized container.

But ammonia has hardly been used as a fuel for gas turbines due to its slower rate of combustion and lower level of heat generation compared to liquefied natural gas (LNG).

Instead of burning ammonia directly to generate power, the three parties have chosen to decompose ammonia into hydrogen and nitrogen for use by gas turbines. POSCO added that the new partnership marks the world’s first case that integrates ammonia production, cracker and gas turbine technologies.

Write to Jung-hwan Hwang at jung@hankyung.com

Daniel Cho edited this article.

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