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Emerson Software helps Intermountain Power Agency deliver carbon-free power

Feb. 14, 2023
Transformative initiative creates clean energy hub for western United States, extends digital foundation for green-hydrogen production, storage and power generation.

Emerson has been selected to automate operations at Intermountain Power Agency’s IPP Renewed power plant, a regional energy hub that uses renewable energy resources. Emerson’s power and hydrogen-production experience as an automation supplier to the adjacent Mitsubishi Power Advanced Clean Energy Storage hub will help the Intermountain Power Agency increase safety, decrease costs and simplify maintenance across the lifecycle of its Utah-based IPP Renewed, they claim.

IPP Renewed transforms the retiring coal-fueled Intermountain Power Project into a clean-energy solution that addresses increasing power-market demands for rapid decarbonization and regulatory challenges. Adjacency to Mitsubishi’s Advanced Clean Energy Storage hub perfectly positions the plant to take advantage of stored green hydrogen to supply carbon-free power to six Western states on demand, the partners note. Green hydrogen produced using renewable energy during peak production will be stored in the hub’s underground salt caverns for use by IPP Renewed’s hydrogen-capable turbines to generate electricity during standard and peak consumption.

“Finding innovative ways to make renewable energy dispatchable is essential to meeting the country’s electricity needs and net zero emissions aspirations,” said Cameron Cowan, general manager of the Intermountain Power Agency. “Our partnership with Emerson, which has renewable power industry expertise and proven automation experience for complex projects, will help us build a digitally optimized facility to deliver reliable, carbon-free electricity for decades to come.”

The 840-MW IPP Renewed plant will use 30% hydrogen fuel and 70% natural gas at startup, transitioning to 100% hydrogen use by 2045. Emerson’s Ovation software and automation technologies and cybersecurity solutions will provide easier integration and improved visibility of the green hydrogen production, storage and generation processes, as well as reliable, secure control and monitoring of the IPP Renewed balance-of-plant operations, they said.

“Successfully managing supply and demand of renewable energy will be a key differentiator for power generation facilities competing in a low-carbon energy future,” said Bob Yeager, president of Emerson’s power and water business. “Intermountain Power Agency is reimagining power generation by scaling critical emerging technologies and using innovative automation software and solutions to help reliably and securely meet consumer demand, creating a model for all organizations in the energy generation marketplace.”

Emerson will help the Intermountain Power Agency implement an end-to-end integrated Ovation platform—from green hydrogen production and storage at Mitsubishi’s Advanced Clean Energy hub to carbon-free electricity generation at the IPP Renewed plant. The plant will also use digital solutions to optimize performance and reliability, enable predictive and artificial intelligence-driven maintenance strategies, automate operational decision making and support commissioning and training.