Hydrogen

Boosting alternative energy sources worldwide

Electrolyzers and Fuel Cells Manufacturing: Powering Decarbonization

Hydrogen is a safe and highly efficient energy carrier. It is also a reliable, zero-emission power source that can fuel passenger and industrial vehicles, in addition to other applications. This places hydrogen in an ideal position to boost the adoption of renewables worldwide, which will subsequently help tackle multiple critical energy challenges.

The Hydrogen Value Chain

Green Hydrogen has become a key contributor in the search for alternative energy sources due to its versatility and minimal carbon footprint. Its importance is reflected in the European Union’s target to produce 10m tons of green hydrogen by 2030.

Along the Green Hydrogen value chain, Comau focus on the generation and final energy demand:

Primary
Energy
Conversion
& Processing
Storage, Transportation
& Distribution
Final Energy
Demand
The value chain begins with the generation of renewable energy from renewables (solar, wind, hydropower). This energy is crucial as it will power the electrolysis process later on.
Electrolyzers split water into hydrogen and oxygen. The hydrogen produced is considered green if the electricity used is from renewable sources.Once produced, the hydrogen is typically compressed and stored in tanks. Hydrogen can be transported in various ways, including pipelines, trucks, or ships. Distribution involves delivering hydrogen to end-users, e.g.: refueling stations.The final stage of the value chain involves the use of hydrogen in different sectors. This can include using Hydrogen as a fuel for transportation, feedstock for industrial processes, or a source of clean energy in power generation.

By integrating its advanced technology and automation expertise to manage the assembly and production of fuel cells and electrolyzers, Comau is helping companies scale-up production volumes.

More importantly, its field proven solutions ensure absolute quality and full traceability throughout the high-precision manufacturing process.

Decoding the Technology Roadmap

Fuel cells combine hydrogen and air to produce electricity, emitting only water and heat as by products. Electrolyzers do the opposite, breaking water into hydrogen and oxygen using electricity.

Both are considered to be highly efficient energy sources and market forecasts suggest that the increasing demand for green hydrogen will boost the demand for electrolyzers from an estimated 120 MW installed in 2020 to more than 20 GW in 2030.

Here at Comau, we are automating the production of electrolyzers and fuel cells to support the creation of zero-emission green hydrogen. To do so, we work side-by-side with our customers to manage the entire industrial process life cycle, from conceptual engineering to manufacturing and support services with the goal of making a better electrolyzer, or fuel cell, at a lower cost.

In fact, Comau automation can help manufacturers reduce costs by up to 20%.

Automated Manufacturing Made Easy

Comau’s expertise in automating traditionally manual manufacturing processes extends to hydrogen and renewable energy. Backed by our Design for Manufacturing and Assembly approach, which includes Design for Automation, we employ a synergistic method of designing the manufacturing process in tandem with the product itself. From start to finish, we help you evaluate opportunities, automate key processes and upskill your workforce.

  • Consultancy: manufacturing concept & simultaneous engineering, DFMEA¹, business case support
  • Validation: in-house lab testing, pilot development
  • Turnkey supply: scalable and seamless solutions
  • Digitalization: traceability, quality inspection, line monitoring and simulation
  • Training & Support: robotics supervision and management, technical training and after sales services

¹Design Failure Mode and Effects Analysis

Full Service Partner

Speeding the world’s annual hydrogen production capacity is just one benefit of automation; others include increased precision and the reduced burden of cleanroom security measures.

As a full service partner, Comau supports its customers along their hydrogen production and utilization journey regardless of the underlying fuel cell or electrolyzer technology.

Our proprietary solutions portfolio is designed to automate key process steps including cell preparation and stacking, leak testing and more. The following boxes in grey represent the areas where Comau leverages the full potential of automation. Visit the download section below and access the brochure.

*MEA: Membrane Electrode Assembly
**BPP: Bipolar Plate
***BOP: Balance of Plant

In addition, by supporting customers with our Simultaneous Engineering approach, we can help them design their products in a way that will be easier and more cost effective when assembling them with automation.

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Manufacturing Excellence

Today’s manufacturing scenarios increasingly require full process traceability and may or may not necessitate adherence to clean room standards. Cell testing procedures are also extensive since and cover both leaks and electrical operations.

Here’s where Comau’s 50-years of automation expertise gives us a leading edge. We make sure that every unit undergoes rigorous leak testing, validating its integrity and performance.

Our complete family of robots, and advanced gripping and vision systems enable the effective automation of stack and system production.

More importantly, our standard automation cells ensure easy set-up with zero engineering design hours to ramp-up production in the fastest and most cost-effective way possible – without sacrificing advanced functionality or future scalability.

Steadfast Commitment to Proven Results

Enabling hydrogen production and deployment is a priority at Comau. Our very first hydrogen fuel cell project featured a proprietary high-speed, high-precision multi-axis stacking technology that can simultaneously manage the pole piece pick-up, code scanning, secondary positioning, and shell loading within 4 seconds.

Similarly, we are actively applying our expertise on multiple fuel cell and electrolyzer projects around the world, including solutions for light and heavy-duty vehicles.

When it comes to increasing production volumes while lowering the cost of fuel cell and electrolyzer manufacturing, Comau is your automation partner of choice.

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