Cat is also thinking about hydrogen and translating thoughts into actions from stationary applications. The company will begin offering Cat® generator sets capable of operating on 100% hydrogen, including fully renewable green hydrogen, on a designed-to-order basis in the fourth quarter of 2021. Additionally, later this year Caterpillar will launch commercially available power generation solutions from 400 kW to 4.5 MW that can be configured to operate on natural gas blended with up to 25% hydrogen.
Cat generator sets like hydrogen
These market-focused innovations leverage power generation projects currently operating on natural gas blended with up to 80% hydrogen to help address customers’ carbon-reduction goals with high-performing, cost-effective technologies that demonstrate the near-term viability of hydrogen as a fuel source. Building on 35 years of experience across multiple end markets, Caterpillar continues to improve the performance of hydrogen-fueled power technologies with minimal impacts on maintenance costs and schedules, availability and operations.
“The power solutions landscape is transforming as customers look to maximize the environmental and economic benefits of reducing their carbon intensities,” said Bart Myers, general manager for Caterpillar Large Electric Power. “We’re extending our leadership through numerous initiatives that demonstrate the viability of power solutions that can utilize many types of hydrogen, including fully renewable, in order to shorten the path to commercial availability.”
In the fourth quarter of 2021, Caterpillar will begin offering the Cat G3516H gas generator set specifically configured to use 100% hydrogen for fuel. Initially available as demonstrator units in North America and Europe with initial deliveries in late 2022, the Cat G3516H generator set will be offered with a rating of 1250 kW for 50 or 60 Hz continuous, prime, and load management applications. Later this year, Caterpillar will also begin a staged roll-out of commercially available Cat CG132B, CG170B, G3500H, G3500 with Fast Response, and CG260 gas generator sets configured to enable operation on natural gas blended with up to 25% hydrogen for continuous, prime, and load management applications in North America and Europe. Additionally, the company will offer retrofit kits that provide hydrogen blending capabilities up to 25% hydrogen for select generator sets built on these engine platforms. Production of new natural gas generator sets and retrofit kits capable of 25% hydrogen will begin in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Plans for operating on 100% hydrogen include developing a range of commercially available products and upgrades for existing Cat gas generators. The development and launch of these solutions address potential customer demand growth as the hydrogen supply infrastructure matures, and these initiatives demonstrate Caterpillar’s comprehensive, wide-ranging commitment to helping customers meet their climate-related objectives.
The multiple ways of sustainability
Caterpillar’s hydrogen-capable reciprocating engines, gas turbines and renewable green hydrogen fuel cell projects are the latest examples of the company’s commitment to power solutions that help customers utilize more sustainable energy sources:
- Solar® Turbines’ gas turbines have run on high hydrogen blends for decades and are capable of operating on 100% hydrogen today. Solar has a large installed base of high hydrogen blend gas turbines.
- Caterpillar’s hybrid energy solutions technology suite includes photovoltaic (PV) solar modules, bi-directional power (BDP) inverters, energy storage system (ESS) modules, advanced microgrid controllers and full digital monitoring.
- Cat cogeneration combined heat and power (CHP) systems simultaneously provide power for electrical loads as well as high-efficiency heating and cooling.
- Cat generator sets can be configured to operate on numerous biogas fuels, including fermentation biogas, landfill gas, and wastewater biogas.
- Cat diesel-fueled power solutions have enabled operation on various hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) fuel products for more than a decade, including a system for Microsoft data centers in Sweden that will use a co-processed synthetic diesel fuel containing more than 50% renewable raw materials.
- Caterpillar and Certarus Ltd. announced in April a memorandum of understanding to explore opportunities for bringing lower-carbon energy solutions to their combined customer base. The companies will work together to advance the use of lower-carbon fuels including hydrogen, as well as conventional and renewable natural gas.