4. AragonAragon is one of the seventeen Autonomous Regions of Spain. It is located in the northeast of the Iberian Peninsula, equidistant of nearly everything and always close (only some 75 minutes from Madrid and Barcelona, thanks to the high-speed train). With 47,724 square kilometres, this old kingdom, which once was one of the oldest nations of Europe, has more than 1,200,000 inhabitants nowadays.

Aragon Hydrogen Strategy

The principal instrument implemented by the Government of Aragon is the Foundation for the Development of New Hydrogen Technologies in Aragon (FHa) created in 2003, whose main objective is the development of new hydrogen technologies integrated with renewable energies and the promotion of Aragon’s incorporation to economic activities related to the use of the hydrogen as an energy vector. To that end, carries out the organisation, management and execution of a wide range of actions in order to generate, store and transport hydrogen for its use in fuel cells, in transport applications or for the generation of distributed energy. Thus, it aims to encourage research, technological development, cogeneration and industrial adaptation, contributing to industrial modernisation and the improvement of competitiveness. The implantation of projects based on sustainable energies that provide technological innovation and promote the energetic and environmental sustainability will be favoured. Nowadays there are 73 members which are part of its Board and they belong to different sectors of interest.

The principal instrument implemented by the Government of Aragon is the Foundation for the Development of New Hydrogen Technologies in Aragon (FHa) created in 2003, whose main objective is the development of new hydrogen technologies integrated with renewable energies and the promotion of Aragon’s incorporation to economic activities related to the use of the hydrogen as an energy vector. To that end, carries out the organisation, management and execution of a wide range of actions in order to generate, store and transport hydrogen for its use in fuel cells, in transport applications or for the generation of distributed energy. Thus, it aims to encourage research, technological development, cogeneration and industrial adaptation, contributing to industrial modernisation and the improvement of competitiveness. The implantation of projects based on sustainable energies that provide technological innovation and promote the energetic and environmental sustainability will be favoured. Nowadays there are 73 members which are part of its Board and they belong to different sectors of interest.

Aragon Hydrogen Master Plan

http://hidrogenoaragon.org/en/master-plan/

Eight years after the first one, the drafting of the new Master Plan comes about in a period in which the hydrogen sector is facing new technological challenges, with an important regulation impetus for its development.

The current Hydrogen Master Plan 2016 – 2020 constitutes the third revision of a challenge initiated in 2007 with hydrogen as a key technology for industrial development, which affects and is affected by the most important industrial subsectors in Aragon, and on the other hand, working towards the reduction of the energy dependence. On that date, the Plan constituted a first guide of performances for all companies and agencies that were part of it. It also marked, to some extent, the evolution of the Foundation for the Development of New Hydrogen Technologies in Aragon (FHa) in its first years, although it was set up with the purpose of offering unequivocal experience to the entire Aragonese business fabric, especially SMEs and in strategic sectors. The Plan was not a rigid list of projects but rather a guide being continuously reviewed and revised, as exemplified by the publication in 2011 of the subsequent Plan 2011-2015.

An important milestone was the adoption by the Government of Aragon of the strategy emanating from the Master Plans carried out by the Foundation itself. This Autonomous Community’s strategy was included, after the corresponding dialogue with economic and social agents and with the Aragonese industrial and business sector, in the programmes and policies of the Government that supported the objectives of the Master Plan, thus showing how it has been supported from the beginning.

Link to Website: www.hidrogenoaragon.org

Hydrogen and fuel cells in Aragon

In the field of hydrogen production, Aragon has some strengths: abundant renewable resources: sun, wind, water and territory, taking place a surplus electrical renewable production in the region. In this scenario the Hydrogen Foundation in Aragon, as the driving force in hydrogen technologies in the region, is supported by the most important energetic companies of the region, which form part of its Council.

Regarding fuel cells, Aragon has research groups working on PEM and SOFC fuels development. In addition, Aragon’s research centres maintain a good relationship with their Spanish and European counterparts, and have participated in several relevant R&D projects on fuel cells with them.

Last, but not least, in Aragon the automotive sector is one of the most important industrial sectors. With regards to infrastructure, Aragon owns the first Spanish hydrogen highway (Zaragoza-Huesca) and training circuits (Motorland Technology Park) that provide ideal conditions to place Aragon as a reference on the national and European hydrogen vehicle map. The ITHER project was based on the hydrogen production using renewable energy sources in order to use ‘t in an automotive. Because of this project, a hydrogen refuelling station started to operate at the Walqa Technology Park in June 2010. In addition, a second hydrogen refuelling station was built in Zaragoza on the occasion of the celebration of the Expo Zaragoza 2008, where three public buses powered by hydrogen were used for the event.

Aragon’s membership of HyER

The Government of Aragon has been member of HyER since April 2008 when HyRaMP was founded. The role of the Aragon Hydrogen Foundation is as a consultant to the Government of Aragon.

The region of Aragon currently is a member of the HyER Board. The regions that belong to the HyER membership are at an investing level in these technologies, which is at the same level of magnitude as that of the FCH JTI.

For Aragon, being a member of HyER and being part of its Board shows that the region is one of the regions leading energy change towards sustainable transport.