In parallel, the European Commission’s goal is to rise the share of hydrogen in Europe’s energy mix from 2% to 14% by 2050, to support the emission reduction target of 55% by 2030 (announced on 16th September).
Unfortunately, grey hydrogen (produced by fossil fuels) still accounts for roughly 95% of hydrogen produced in the world today.
This underscores how critical new technologies will be to sustain Europe’s green transition.
To support those policies, the Joint European Disruptive Initiative (JEDI), the European Darpa, is launching the JEDI Green Hydrogen GrandChallenge.
The GrandChallenge aims to make major scientific and technological breakthroughs, in order to lead to faster market adoption of hydrogen.
Private or public organisations that aim for massive impact in the hydrogen/energy space are encouraged to join the tender for which JEDI will select one or several strategic partners in the next eight weeks.
Green not grey hydrogen
Hydrogen is crucial to achieve the decarbonisation of human activities.
But for its large-scale deployment, green hydrogen and its derivatives (ammonia, synthetic fuels…) need to be cost- competitive with alternative options in terms of production, transportation and end-use.
This is currently far from being the case due to three main drawbacks:
- Lack of technological maturity and scalability makes hydrogen too expensive: blue and green hydrogen production represent only 4% of the current hydrogen supply
- Hydrogen has a low volumetric energy density and is more difficult to transport and distribute than polluting alternatives
- End-use technologies based on hydrogen have not matured enough in hard-to-abate sectors (heavy transportation, steel and cement industries)
Green Hydrogen GrandChallenge aims to break critical tech bottlenecks
Public support and subsidies will support the development of hydrogen, but focused and bold research and innovation efforts are needed for breaking current technological bottlenecks.
The JEDI Green Hydrogen GrandChallenge will be focused on four main topics:
- Massively reducing the costs of green hydrogen production
- Designing a scarce-material-free electrolyser
- Developing a radical better method for transporting and storing hydrogen
- An exciting hydrogen-powered aviation challenge
These Challenges and their precise metrics for success will be individually detailed in the next weeks.