Image: New West Town

Practical test in Esslingen: Safe hydrogen solutions for climate-friendly urban districts

In the “Neue Weststadt” in Esslingen, an innovative and sustainable urban quarter is being built on an area of 100,000 m2 with around 450 apartments, office and commercial space and a new building for the Esslingen University of Applied Sciences. This is the first time that the production and use of green hydrogen has been realised at neighbourhood level. The technical “heart” of the quarter is an underground energy centre in which green hydrogen is produced by electrolysis using surplus solar power from the photovoltaic systems on the roofs. The hydrogen can be converted back into electricity via a combined heat and power plant, fed into the natural gas grid for long-term storage or used to supply regional industrial and mobility companies.

TÜV SÜD provided safety engineering support for the development and implementation of the energy concept for the “Neue Weststadt” in Esslingen. The special challenge was the integration of hydrogen production into an urban quarter. For example, much more comprehensive requirements must be taken into account in the approval process in public areas than on greenfield sites or industrial sites with restricted access. TÜV SÜD’s safety assessment covered not only the electrolyser for hydrogen production, but all the necessary systems and components for the generation, storage, distribution and reconversion of the hydrogen produced – including a hydrogen pipeline laid in the ground and a hydrogen filling plant.

TÜV SÜD has extensive expertise and experience in hydrogen technologies, from production, storage and distribution to applications in a wide range of sectors and the certification of green hydrogen. A comprehensive overview of these services is available on the Internet at