New partnership seeks to form an “Advanced Energy Community”
Southern California Gas has announced that it will be working with the University of California-Irvine’s Advanced Power & Energy Program. Through this partnership, Southern California Gas will help design what is being called an “Advanced Energy Community.” This community will take form in a neighborhood that is located in Huntington Beach. The initiative is meant to highlight the growing importance of renewable energy and how clean power can be used to provide communities with the electrical power that they need.
New community will focus on several types of renewable energy
The community is meant to replicate a model that highlights a variety of renewable energy solutions. Solar, wind, and natural gas will be featured prominently in the new community. There will also be power-to-gas systems in place. Such systems will take excess electrical power and store it as hydrogen and potentially other gases. This form of chemical storage is seen as highly efficient. In the case of hydrogen, this gas can be consumed by fuel cells in order to generate electricity whenever it is needed.
Power-to-gas technology is gaining more attention
Power-to-gas technology has been advancing at a rapid pace. In 2016, the University of California-Irvine launched a pilot project that sought to demonstrate the capabilities of this technology. Many power-to-gas systems are focused on the production of hydrogen fuel. Hydrogen can be used for a wide variety of purposes. Notably, hydrogen has become quite popular in the transportation sector and a power-to-gas system could provide a reasonable infrastructure that could support the use of fuel cell vehicles within a small community.
Wasted renewable energy could be saved through power-to-gas systems
Using excess renewable energy to produce hydrogen is becoming a priority. According to a 2017 study from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, as much as 7,800 gigawatt-hours of renewable energy will be curtailed in California by 2025. If all of this electricity were converted into gas, it could be used to produce enough clean energy to power as many as 187,000 average homes.