In this episode of #LØRN, Silvija speaks with the CEO of ZEG Power, Kathrine K. Ryengen. She has extensive experience with technology start-ups and from commercializing innovative business models and technologies for industrial applications. Prior to ZEG Power, Ryengen worked for 9 years in Scatec startup companies, including Norsk Titanium, a successful, global leader within additive manufacturing of structural titanium components for aerospace applications, where she was part of the original startup team and served as VP Business Development. ZEG Power works with the efficient production of emission-free hydrogen with their self-developed technology. In the episode, Kathrine tells about this technology and how they are able to capture CO2 from production. She also shares her thoughts about the potential of hydrogen for the Norwegian industry, in addition to the potential of what she refers to as "blue hydrogen".
Who is Kathrine and what drives you?
I am an engineer and I have spent a decade in technology consulting, as well as 10 years working with the development and commercialisation of new technology. I first became interested in energy technology back in 2008, while I was working for an offshore wind start-up owned by Scatec. I later became optimistic when I saw the tremendous global developments within renewable energy.
What are you doing at work?
I am currently leading the efforts to achieve the successful commercialisation of an energy start-up called ZEG Power.
What are the most important concepts in energy technology (your sub-branch)?
I believe that the most important concept in energy technology is the combination of technologies. By combining technologies, we can achieve green energy generation and utilisation. Renewable energy generation is critical to achieving global emission targets and a circular economy. However, a bold renewable strategy will also need to be balanced with technologies that enable power balancing. Green hydrogen is expected to play an important role in the future energy mix.
Why is it exciting?
Working to commercialise ZEG Power is exciting on many levels. I find commercialising Norwegian innovations and patents very rewarding. In addition, contributing to a positive environmental impact also gives meaning and substance. On top of that, you have the excitement of building a team, being exposed to new market developments – and having fun along the way.
Your own favourite projects in energy technology?
My favourite projects have been in the application of the ZEG technology. It can be used to upgrade biogas to green hydrogen, enabling a negative CO2 footprint when utilizing the Bio-CO2. In addition, the ZEG technology provides for green hydrogen generation from natural gas, reducing CO2 emissions from industry – and that’s exciting.
Your other favourite examples of energy technology internationally and nationally?
I’m impressed with how the Norwegian company Nel has taken lead in the global Hydrogen market, and the impact of their efforts on the transport sector. I am also generally impressed by the size and maturity of solar power projects, as well as the global increase in offshore wind projects.
How do you usually explain energy technology?
I usually start by explaining the problems associated with CO2 and how current solutions, such as CO2 capture, are costly and inefficient – and thus not viable in the long term. I go on to describe the ZEG Power Solution for reforming hydrocarbon gas to hydrogen, which will not only reduce emissions, but also save costs and help companies of all sizes meet industry standards.
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Spørsmål:How would you explain the concept of transforming natural gas stations into hydrogen power stations?
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