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Emerson technologies help SoCalGas deliver clean energy for [H2] Innovation Experience

Nov. 2, 2022
Residential microgrid uses advanced automation to create hydrogen from renewable electricity.

Southern California Gas (SoCalGas) has selected Emerson’s digital technologies, software and services to demonstrate the resiliency and reliability of its new [H2] Innovation Experience in Southern California. One of the first microgrid projects of its kind in the United States, the [H2] Innovation Experience is a technology demonstration that aims to show how carbon-free gas made from renewable electricity can be used in pure form or as a blend to fuel clean energy systems of the future. 

The project features a nearly 2,000-square-foot home outfitted with solar panels, a power storage battery system, an electrolyzer to convert solar energy to renewable hydrogen, and a fuel cell to supply electricity. The hydrogen, produced at the site, will also be blended with utility-provided natural gas and used in the home’s heat pump HVAC unit, water heater, clothes dryer and stove.

“Residential neighborhood-scale facilities, like the [H2] Innovation Experience, that are capable of generating, storing and transmitting electricity with zero carbon emissions will be a critical component for meeting sustainable power demand,” said Neil Navin, vice president of clean energy innovations at SoCalGas. “Emerson’s technologies and expertise facilitated a shorter start up while ensuring the safety and reliability of this demonstration project.”

According to SoCalGas research, with clean fuels like renewable natural gas and hydrogen, coupled with carbon management, California can reach 100% net zero goals more affordably, more equitably and with less risk of power disruptions, customer conversion barriers, and technological limitations.

“Balancing energy consumption with available sources requires sophisticated control and precise measurement,” said Mark Bulanda, executive president of Emerson’s Automation Solutions business. “We have worked on a variety of hydrogen projects globally, applying our expertise and technologies to automate hydrogen production and consumption, making the promise of renewable energy a reality.”

In addition to deep domain expertise in hydrogen, Emerson provides its DeltaV advanced process control system, safety instrumented systems, electronic marshaling technology, instrumentation, final control elements and analytics solutions to optimize the performance of the SoCalGas [H2] Innovation Experience.