Monolith Materials, Nebraska Green Hydrogen Maker, Obtains SK Funding
On Thursday, SK Inc, the outgoing investment arm of South Korea’s third-largest conglomerate, said it was the lead investor in a venture capital round for Monolith Materials, the producer of green hydrogen based in Lincoln, Nebraska. The funds will be used to expand Monolith’s green hydrogen production plant in Nebraska, in line with SK’s stated goal of bringing carbon neutral energy to global markets. SK will also work with Monolith as it expands into new geographies.
Other investors in the SK-led consortium include NextEra Energy Resources, private equity firm Perry Creek Capital, as well as Capital management in azimuth, Cornell Capital and Warburg pincus.
Monolith Materials is the first US manufacturer to produce “hydrogen turquoise” (that is, meeting the industry standard for the cleanest hydrogen currently available) on a commercial scale using a proprietary process called methane pyrolysis. This process uses renewable energy to convert natural gas into clean hydrogen and a solid carbonaceous material called carbon black, which is used as an input in automotive and industrial applications. Monolith also recently announced its intention to produce clean ammonia at a separate production facility in Nebraska.
Expansion of its hydrogen facility is expected to be completed in 2024, when the production of green hydrogen, clean ammonia and carbon black by Monolith Materials is expected to eliminate approximately 1 million metric tonnes of gas emissions. greenhouse atmosphere.
“Monolith Materials’ proprietary green hydrogen production process supports SK’s initiative to lead the global transition to a hydrogen economy and make significant progress towards a more sustainable energy system,” SK Inc Executive Vice President Moo-hwan Kim said in announcing the investment round. “SK recognizes the essential role hydrogen plays in alternative energy sources, and we are encouraged by Monolith’s technology which advances the production of clean hydrogen. “
SK’s investment in Monolith is part of a larger hydrogen push within the Korean conglomerate, which has committed capital to global hydrogen partnerships, innovations in hydrogen production methods and demand development initiatives. Late last year, SK Inc. launched a group-level hydrogen business called the “Hydrogen Business Development Center”, which aims to produce 280,000 tonnes of hydrogen (including 30,000 tonnes of hydrogen liquefied) from 2023, and 250,000 green hydrogen. starting in 2025. Earlier this year, the company invested approximately $ 1.6 billion in Connect the power, a New York-based supplier of hydrogen fuel cells and refueling solutions, in a partnership to jointly enter the Asian hydrogen market.
In 2019, President of Groupe SK Tae-won Chey committed to invest 10 billion dollars To create new jobs and opportunities for communities across the United States, Saskatchewan companies have more than 2,000 employees at sites in 10 states with plans that could more than triple its U.S. employee base over the course of the next three years.
In November 2020, Monolith Materials received an investment from the US subsidiary of Japanese industrial giant Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) to support its expansion of clean hydrogen.