Evolution of a Hydrogen Economy

September 25th, 2020

Thursday 7 November 2019

CSIRO and the CSIRO Alumni network held our second event in the Science Forum series.

Designed to update and promote new areas of science discovery, these talks explore the opportunities that industry, universities and government have to collaborate and improve the ecosystem together.

Recently there has been a considerable amount of work undertaken (both globally and domestically) seeking to quantify the economic opportunities associated with hydrogen. The National Hydrogen Roadmap takes that analysis a step further by focusing on how those opportunities can be realised and the speaker discussed how this blueprint for the development of a hydrogen industry in Australia can and is being enacted in WA.

We heard from three speakers who spoke about the economic opportunities associated with hydrogen and the role R&D plays in this emerging industry:

• Dr Hartley, Research Director, CSIRO Energy

• Dr Michael Dolan, Hydrogen Innovation and Development Lead at Fortescue

• Mr Luc Kox, Commercial Manager, Hazer Group

The talk was followed by Q&A, networking drinks and refreshments.


Dr Hartley, Research Director, CSIRO Energy

Dr Patrick Hartley is the Research Director of the Oil, Gas and Fuels research program within CSIRO’s Energy Business Unit. The program comprises 85 research staff and students working on applied research projects which span the energy resources value chain, with a particular emphasis on the sustainable development of Australia’s petroleum resources and on the associated challenges of large scale carbon dioxide storage. The multidisciplinary skill base of the program’s scientists ranges from fundamental geosciences through to energy resource processing and conversion, and draws on further multidisciplinary expertise across CSIRO in materials science, production instrumentation and process modelling.

In 2018, he established CSIRO’s Hydrogen Energy Systems Future Science Platform (FSP). This major initiative focusses on addressing research challenges which underpin the development of hydrogen energy value chains in Australia. During this time, he co-led the formulation of CSIRO’s ‘National Hydrogen Roadmap, and, with the Chief Scientist of Australia, the briefing paper ‘Hydrogen for Australia’s Future’ which was presented to the Council of Australian Government’s (COAG) Energy council in August 2018.

Patrick graduated with a PhD in Chemical Engineering from Imperial College, London in 1994, and was subsequently awarded a research fellowship from the Royal Society, London, which allowed him to take up full time research fellowship roles at the University of Melbourne from 1994 to 1998, when he joined CSIRO as a research scientist. Since then, he has led research teams working with national and international large corporations and SME’s to develop new technologies for applications in drug delivery, energy storage, water treatment and petrochemical recovery. He has co-authored more than 90 peer reviewed publications almost all in collaboration with university and/or other research institution partners.

Patrick has occupied senior research management roles in CSIRO since 2006, and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He holds an Adjunct Professorship at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia.

Dr Michael Dolan, Hydrogen Innovation and Development Lead at Fortescue

Michael Dolan is the Hydrogen Innovation and Development Lead at Fortescue. With a focus on hydrogen technologies and processes, Michael supports Fortescue’s efforts to transition towards hydrogen energy systems in its own operations, as well as to establish an Australian hydrogen industry for domestic and international markets. Michael joined Fortescue a distinguished career in research and development with CSIRO. He led the development of a membrane-based hydrogen purification technology, culminating last year in the world-first demonstration of fuel cell vehicle refuelling with hydrogen derived from ammonia. Michael holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours), PhD and MBA.

Mr Luc Kox, Commercial Manager, Hazer Group

Hazer Group is a technology development company undertaking the commercialisation of the Hazer Process: a low-emission hydrogen and graphite production process. The technology originated from the University of Western Australia. Hazer is the only company listed on the Australian Stock Exchange that is solely focused on hydrogen. As Commercial Manager with Hazer Group, Luc is responsible for the commercialisation and growth of the company by identifying and developing opportunities for applications of the Hazer Process and the associated partnerships both in Australia and overseas. Luc has over 20 years’ experience in the water, oil & gas and renewable energy sectors with extensive experience in international business development and commercial management. Prior to moving to Perth in 2008, Luc was successfully driving the business development activities in Asia for a multinational company from The Netherlands focusing on water related technologies, clean tech and infrastructure.