New talent to support hydrogen development

Patrik Pykälä-Aho, an upcoming graduate, is one of the latest new faces to join AW-Energy Oy in Finland. He is working with us on our in-house megawatt scale test facility, while also completing his University Master’s thesis on green hydrogen production using WaveRoller wave energy technology.

In this short interview, Patrik talks about his role in the business and reveals what made him join the AW-Energy team.

“I have long had an interest in hydrogen production and believe the combination of wave energy and solar power is a very good solution in the production of green hydrogen,” says Patrik. “My thesis is specialised on the technical integration of wave energy for the production of green hydrogen, and how best to create a highly efficient process to deliver water and energy – clean power for the future and without the carbon emissions we are all experiencing globally today.”

Studying a Master’s degree in Energy Systems and Markets at Aalto University, Patrik has previous fuel cell and electrolyser experience with Convion at Espoo in Southern Finland and has also gained experience with Reka Cables in Hyvinkää.

His knowledge in electrolysis technology is helping to optimise AW-Energy’s process in green hydrogen production and further reduce operating costs.

Patrik highlights how wave energy has very different power generation profiles to other forms of energy. When solar power, which is most efficient during the day, is combined with wave energy that can run continuously throughout the night, the combined capacity of both energy forms work very well together to deliver sustainable, continuous energy in the green hydrogen production cycle.

Green hydrogen addresses several European challenges related to energy and climate change, including reductions in GHG levels. The EU and many other regions have targeted climate neutrality by 2050. Presently renewable sources account for only 10% of electricity production worldwide.

As Patrik remarks, the consistent and sustainable renewable energy supply is the missing link to reach cost-efficient decarbonisation. “WaveRoller bridges the gap to e-fuels and 100% renewables.”

The thesis Patrick is completing will open up more ideas for operators in the hydrogen market to deliver the big impact needed for the integration of renewables sources with hydrogen production. The level of information and analysis from Patrik’s insight is seen to be of real value for industry.

“Green hydrogen has for many years been thought of as the next big thing, but the situation is a ‘here and now’ issue,” says Patrik. “The solution is very real because of climate change issues. Industries are being forced to address their carbon emissions through cleaner energy options, and energy systems are having to be flexible to support this major energy transition to a cleaner future. Today is the critical timing for investment and discovering commercially-ready solutions, which is one of the reasons why I decided to join AW-Energy. Large investments across the EU are already being made and there is confidence in industry for a near-term major breakthrough solution.”

Patrik is soon to graduate from his 4-year degree in December this year.  All the team at AW-Energy wish Patrik every success with the completion of his thesis, and in his new role in the Finnish company’s wave energy business.

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AW-Energy is a pioneer in the green economy and is the global leader in wave energy technology. Its flagship product, WaveRoller®, is a submerged wave energy converter based on a hinged panel that is attached to the sea bed in the near shore area. It generates electricity from the movement of the waves (surge phenomenon) and is connected to the electric grid onshore. The company is based in Finland, and operates in multiple continents cooperating with strong industrial partners. The company employs a highly professional and efficient team that manages a network of over 100 engineers and technical staff.

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