Cat’s new 100% hydrogen-powered gen-sets coming later this year

By Mike BrezonickSeptember 08, 2021

Caterpillar said it will launch generator sets capable of operating on 100% hydrogen late this year

Caterpillar will begin offering generator sets capable of operating on 100% hydrogen by the end of this year.

According to the company, Cat’s new gen-sets will be able to use fully renewable green hydrogen and will be available on a designed-to-order basis in the fourth quarter of 2021.

Caterpillar will also 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.

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.

“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.”

Hydrogen power generators

In the fourth quarter, Caterpillar said it will begin offering the Cat G3516H gas generator set specifically configured to use 100% hydrogen 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 blends 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. Caterpillar said the development and launch of these solutions address potential customer demand growth as the hydrogen supply infrastructure matures and demonstrate the company’s comprehensive, wide-ranging commitment to helping customers meet their climate-related objectives.

Caterpillar also noted that its 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, the company said.

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