Description: The demonstration phase of the INGRID pilot is foreseen in the next period and it is aimed at validating the objectives of the Project. First of all, the operational phase will give an important feedback about the collaboration of the DSO with a multi carrier hub like the one INGRID implements. The DSO will daily or weekly provide the plant with a consumption profile, that the plant will try to follow by also taking into account the constraints of the hydrogen production and distribution processes. The Energy Management System (EMS) of the plant will manage the storage devices in order to make them available to receive the corresponding hydrogen in that period. Working as a variable load, the electrolyser is expected to significantly affect the grid, in terms of balancing service, since it will support the DSO for the overall stability of the grid. This impact will be registered and quantified by e-distribuzione. On the other hand, since most of the power consumed will be produced by the RES available in the zone, the operational phase will demonstrate the effectiveness of the use of the Hydrogen Solid-state Storage to stock “green energy”, avoiding the RES curtailment, unavoidable otherwise. The cooperation with the DSO concerns also the generation capacity offered by the plant: during the demonstration phase, part of the hydrogen stored in the magnesium sponges will supply a fuel cell able to provide ancillary services to the LV grid and to support the EV recharging. Most of the activities regarding the plant construction, the health and safety policy, and device transportation have been finalized.

Several system components have been already shipped to the plant in Troia and partially installed.

• The Water Electrolyser and the Fuel Cell have been delivered by Hydrogenics, installed and placed inside the plant.

• The filling stations for the Hydrogen Solid-state Storage have been delivered by McPhy Energy, along with their gas panel and electrical cabinet. The gas distribution panel has been delivered to be connected with the Water Electrolyser. The magnesium blocks have been delivered too and installed in their respective stations. The magnesium-based storage devices are now being tested and certified by the designated figures.

• BFP has concluded all the civil works: the control room, the transformer cabin and the repository for the hydrogen blocks have been built up. The electrical connections to the MV and LV grid have been performed. The contracts for telecommunications services will be activated in the next days. Once completed the last remaining activities, concerning the gas piping and the electrical connection, the EMS will be deployed, and the operational phase will start.


Description: Electric Storage Systems (ESS) are plants connected to the network able to absorb, accumulate and release electrical energy. The absorbed energy is converted into a form suitable to be easily stored and again, when necessary, converted into electricity and fed back into the network, given that electrical energy as such cannot be stored easily and must therefore be used in the same time when produced. In the last decade the generation from renewable energy sources (RES) has acquired a primary role and ESS are currently used to address the issues in the modulation of power generation which are related to the specificity of RES, not always available and sufficiently predictable.

A distinctive feature of the RES boom is that it has impacted heavily on distribution network by many micro and mini plants. Correspondingly ESS are adapting with installations of similar size, available for the prosumers to optimize the production of their facilities. Nevertheless, the dispersed generation paradigm involves a new role even for the DSO. The Distribution Operator must ensure full use of existing RES facilities and the hosting capacity for future ones, avoiding network congestion, unjustified curtailments in production and delays in the entry into service of new plants. ESS are an essential tool for carrying out these tasks, also able to improve efficiency of power transmission and voltage quality. Hence the commitment of e-distribuzione (the new name recently taken by ENEL Distribuzione) to install and test experimental storage plants on its networks.

Among the most recent ones, several 1 MVA Li-ion systems ranging up to 2 MWh. The INGRID multi-carrier hub installed in Troia is actually an asymmetric storage, consisting of an adjustable 1.3 MW passive load and a 100 kW generator. The storage technology is based on production, by water electrolysis, of hydrogen stored (25 MWh gross) as solid state magnesium hydride. The generator is a hydrogen fuel cell. The demonstrator is characterized as a private installation connected to the public network, not directly operated by the DSO that can demand ancillary services to the storage operator. Trial objectives will be mainly the evaluation of system performance in the minimization of the power rise from MV to HV grid, the modulation of the load diagram of the HV/MV busbar, the LV regulation.


Description: Incorporated in 1995, Hydrogenics Corporation is a publicly listed company on the NASDAQ and the TSX since 2001. Initially the three Canadian founders wanted to build a fuel cell company, but were unable to find any component suppliers back in the early 90’s. Hence, they refocused on FC test equipment instead. After the successful IPO the company invested in FC capability, later divested the equipment activity and acquired the electrolyser business of Stewards and Vandenborre in Belgium. Hydrogenics is a worldwide leader designing, manufacturing, and installing hydrogen systems around the globe.

It offers world leading expertise for a wide range of products and applications, including: PEM (proton exchange membrane) and alkaline electrolyser hydrogen generators for

• hydrogen generation for industrial processes;
• hydrogen generation for fueling stations;
• hydrogen energy storage and transportation.

Hydrogenics is pioneering “Power-to-Gas”, the world’s most innovative way to store and transport energy; hydrogen fuel cell power generators for

• transportation such as urban transit buses, commercial fleets and utility vehicles;
• large and small stationary applications such as backup power for hospitals, emergency services, data centers, corporate and production facilities, telecommunication and small commercial buildings;
• free standing electrical power plants and UPS (uninterruptible power supply) systems.

The INGRID project offered Hydrogenics the opportunity to upscale its pressurized alkaline technology by a factor of 2.5, getting this technology ready for grid-scale energy storage applications. Additionally the integration into multiple renewable hydrogen applications is a very valuable learning process. And lastly it gave Hydrogenics the exposure to the Italian renewable energy landscape and stakeholders. Within the INGRID project Hydrogenics is responsible for the hydrogen generation technology as well as the re-electrification or fuel-cell technology. Next to the solid hydrogen storage technology from McPhy, Hydrogenics technology takes up a central role in the INGRID project.

Online the INGRID plant virtual tour

Description: It’s now available online the virtual tour of the 3D rendering of the INGRID plant. It includes an aerial view, an automatic tour and some hotspots with the descriptions of the different parts of the INGRID plant located in Troia (FG) in Puglia (Italy). Discover the INGRID demosite at the link (it is available using Firefox browser):

Ingrid paper awarded as Best Paper in IARIA ENERGY 2016

Description: The paper “Multi-objective Optimization of Energy Hubs at the Crossroad of Three Energy Distribution Networks” has been awarded as the best paper in IARIA ENERGY 2016 conference, held in Lisbon (Portugal) on June 26-30, 2016.
The paper has been presented by Engineering to explain some INGRID optimizer tools. The paper provides a multi-objective optimization framework aimed at the management of a multi-carrier energy system involving both electricity and hydrogen. Using the concept of the multi-carrier hub, the proposed system has been modelled in order to define completely every energy flow inside the INGRID plant.

The INGRID project will take part in the Energy 2016 in Lisbon (Portugal) on June 26-30, 2016

Description: The INGRID project will take part in the sixth International Conference on Smart Grids, Green Communications and IT Energy-aware Technologies – ENERGY 2016, that will be held in Lisbon (Portugal) on June 26-30, 2016. Engineering will present the project through the paper “Multi-objective Optimization of Energy Hubs at the Crossroad of Three Energy Distribution Networks”.
Target audience: Academic, research, industry
Date: June 26-30, 2016
Location: Lisbon (Portugal)

INGRID - High-capacity hydrogen-based green-energy storage solutions for grid balancing
Work partially supported by European Community under the ENERGY programme of the 7th FP for RTD - project INGRID, contract 296012. The Author is solely responsible for the content of this paper. It does not represent the opinion of the European Community, and the European Community is not responsible for any use that might be made of data appearing therein.

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