HEE Technologies is a hydrogen fuel cell startup based in Cologne, Germany, dedicated to clean energy supply with hydrogen from anywhere and at any time. In 2021, they’ve launched the prototype CH2P-100 and shipped it to a client in China, which later co-founded a joint venture with the company.

In 2022, HEE Technologies conducted testing and achieved grid compliant operation.

Interview with Michael Schmitz, Director of Sales and Business Development & Xudong Liu, Business Development at HEE Technologies GmbH.

Easy Engineering: What are the main areas of activity of the company?

Michael Schmitz & Xudong Liu: We are developing and producing hydrogen fueled push-button systems. Our products are deployed for clean power and heat supply, especially for independent, microgrid and off-grid small to medium users from residential, commercial and industrial sectors. We are providing full service to our customers from installation to service and repair over the lifetime of the product.

E.E: What’s the news about new products?

M.S & X.L: After developing our smaller machines, we are now developing modular systems to meet the needs up to Megawatt level. We would like to keep all the advantages of our systems and just transfer them to larger scales. Namely the fast response time and the high controllability are features, we are very proud of. 

E.E: What are the ranges of products?

M.S & X.L: Our current portfolio ranges from 30 kW electric output up to 100 kW and a thermal output of 130 kW. One unique feature is that we collect all heat of the system and make it available for our customers as hot water of about 70 degrees Celsius. This heat can easily be used to support or replace the existing heating system in larger buildings or provide hot water at remote locations. Thereby our product transfer more than 95% of the incoming energy to usable electricity and heat.  

E.E: At what stage is the market where you are currently active?

M.S & X.L: The market is still at the emerging stage with only pilot projects. Nevertheless, we are target applications that need remote power supply or can operate stand-alone. Typical examples are festivals or construction sites, were the CHP-plant can be installed easily for a certain time and hydrogen is delivered by trailers. Here, we get easily quiet and emission free power for equipment and people. Other typical applications are industrial sites, e.g. production or storage sites of comp, who can produce hydrogen on-site and want to operate autonomously from external gas or electricity grids. These owners then will pay just for their own equipment but not the uncontrollable energy price as we see it today.

As an example: our CH2P-100 machine produces enough heat and power to serve some 200 households. This makes it equally attractive for hospitals and data centers, due to its emission-free and very quiet operation.

E.E: What can you tell us about market trends?

M.S & X.L: Our markets developing rapidly fostered by global heating and international situations. There is a strong focus on producing green hydrogen, which plays a crucial role in energy transition to store and supply green energy without trading off energy security. Fuel cost can be the most significant variable to achieve project economy in many cases including us, and the market has a rather positive expectation towards the drop in hydrogen price in 2030 and 2050 as a result of improved infrastructure, technical maturity and economy of scales, this will enable us to grow rapidly and access to broader markets. According to our calculations, a hydrogen price of three to four Euros per kilogram will make our fuel cell based CH2P-100 system to outperform today any of today’s solution, even if they would operate on Hydrogen. Consequently, we need more installations to further mature the product. We are targeting stationary, decentralized applications which are growing more and more. This in turn yield to increasing demands on grid stabilization. Also here our CH2P-100 system can and will play an important role due to it very fast response time and easy controllability. 

E.E: What are the most innovative products marketed?

M.S & X.L: As of today, we are marketing our CH2P-100 solution with blackstart and island-mode capabilities. As a young startup we are looking for customers and investors that support our growth in market share and to finance our development. For us, digital features such as remote and smart services (e.g. preventive maintenance and IoT-capabilities are as important as the hardware development. 

E.E: What estimations do you have for the rest of 2022?

M.S & X.L: We will secure our first external engineering project and establish our relationship to an external production partner, so we can focus more on market development and R&D. Furthermore, we will strengthen our effort to acquire more market share, inside and outside the European Union.