Power-to-X Shaping a carbon-neutral future together with green hydrogen

power-to-X: Wind turbine generator, solar system, and electrolysis plant

With power-to-X to the All Electric Society

With the key technology power-to-X, renewable energies such as wind or solar power can be supplied in large quantities in a way that makes them distributable, storable, and available on demand.

Power-to-X process
Using power-to-X to transform primary energy into other energy sources YouTube

Energy as needed with power-to-X

A component of the All Electric Society principle is electrical energy generated from renewable sources, such as from solar energy. Process engineering processes convert this energy into storable energy. Technologies known as power-to-X technologies are used for this purpose.

In solar, wind, and hydroelectric plants, a surplus of electricity amasses when there is a lot of sunshine, a lot of wind, or an excess supply of water respectively. This surplus is used to produce fuels (power-to-fuel), hydrogen and methane (power-to-gas), ammonia and methanol (power-to-liquid), and other chemicals. Within the All Electric Society framework, some of the substances produced in this way are in turn used to generate electrical energy. They thus take on the role of an energy store that buffers the fluctuation of the above-mentioned renewable energies and ensures a continuous supply of energy. Such technologies for power-to-X support sector coupling, whereby the electricity, heat, gas, and mobility sectors are interconnected.

Expert presentation “All Electric Society enabled by power-to-X”

At the Phoenix Contact Dialog Days Process Automation Edition, we will discuss the possibilities of a climate-neutral society. Dr. Frank Possel-Dölken, Ulrich Leidecker, and Mathias Füller from Phoenix Contact will also be present.

Find out how our digital solutions and innovative products are supporting the transition in the process industry regarding power-to-X and making the “All Electric Society” a reality.

Smart solutions

Our open and secure digitalization solutions are already being used in the traditional process industry. Learn more about how many of our applications also meet the requirements for the hydrogen industry.

PLCnext Technology ecosystem

Automation systems ready for the future

The integration of new automation concepts is required in order to make power-to-X systems future-proof. The openness of automation concepts and the use of new industrial standards play an important role within the context of digitalization.

The PLCnext Technology ecosystem is the basis for our openness and our standardized digitalization solutions. It allows you to realize concepts such as Open Process Automation (OPA) and to integrate modular system components into large-scale systems via Module Type Package (MTP). MTP speeds up the design, construction, and commissioning of systems. PLCnext Technology also supports the NAMUR Open Architecture (NOA) concept. This allows you to use production data easily and securely, to continuously optimize processes, and to introduce predictive maintenance. The open source PLCnext Technology platform is a future-proof basis for the automation of systems currently being developed. Benefit from special features such as cloud modems, safety controllers, and access to an app store.

Electrolysis plant

Controlling and monitoring electrolysis plants

We enable the monitoring, automation, and digitalization of electrolysis with the associated processes and systems. These include, for example, water treatment, electrolyte handling, gas and liquid tanks, and cooling systems. Furthermore, we also monitor and automate compressors. To ensure the high availability of electrolyzers and thus to guarantee competitiveness, we provide you with the necessary technologies as well as many years of experience in equipping chemical processing plants with automation technology.

To further reduce plant costs, principles such as Design To Cost are important, as is ramping up capacity. In addition, digitalization provides further opportunities, such as the use of the digital twin for process optimization and modernization. The digital transformation is opening up new avenues for making electrolyzers and other systems within the power-to-X industry significantly more efficient and thus making their products more cost-effective.

Pipelines with hydrogen sign

Monitoring pipelines

In addition to pipelines for transporting various gases, the power-to-X industry also requires pipeline systems for supplying buildings.

We provide an effective pipeline leak detection system for detecting very small leaks and precisely calculating the location of the leak. Our monitoring solution is suitable for both synthetic oil pipelines and synthetic gas pipelines as well as hydrogen pipelines.

Hydrogen tank

Monitoring tank systems

Additional tank farms are being built as part of the power-to-X supply chain. The tank farms are not just needed as interim storage for hydrogen for fuel cells, for example. Large tank farms at industrial sites provide hydrogen as a feedstock for power-to-gas and power-to-liquid processes.

For efficient level control, we provide a wide range of SIL-certified technology products for functional safety, Ex i signal isolators, and modular controls. Besides the level control, an overfill protection is installed that uses special valve circuits to prevent tanks from overfilling.

Ship with fuel cells

Controlling and monitoring fuel cells and combined heat and power plants

Today, combined heat and power plants already generate electricity and heat from natural gas. This natural gas can also be replaced by green fuels from the power-to-X industry. This makes this efficient, high-efficiency process even more climate-friendly.

Another way of converting green energy sources into electrical energy is hydrogen fuel cells, which are increasingly finding their way into vehicle technology and other applications.

Phoenix Contact supports both of these concepts with automation and digitalization solutions, such as with our open automation platform PLCnext Technology.


Learn more about our open and reliable technologies for a sustainable future.

Solar field with wind farms
Cybersecurity icons with hand
Man in front of a processing plant
Explosion protection
Solar field with wind farms

The new 5G, APL, TSN, and OPC UA technologies together form the communication of the future. These new concepts are also part of the new power-to-X industry, because this is the only way to ensure that data points can be networked securely, simply, and quickly.

We are actively involved in all of the key standardization committees. In these committees, we are shaping a new, cross-manufacturer communication standard for automation.

More about communication and transmission technologies
Cybersecurity icons with hand

In order to meet the high demands on IT security, the installation of firewalls at one point or another in the critical infrastructure is not sufficient. To minimize all cyber security risks, it is important to define protection goals. These protection goals are based on the established IEC 62443 standard “IT Security for Industrial Automation Solutions”.

As a certified ICS security service provider, we will provide you with sustainable support. The holistic approach also includes product development focused on security.

More about industrial security
Man in front of a processing plant

Managing risks is not only essential with a view to protecting the environment and people. It is also important for maintaining systems and thus securing investment. Along with the safety integrity level (SIL), the performance level (PL) also plays an important role in the use of automated safety systems. Decentral, flexibly configurable solutions such as SafetyBridge technology are already being used today in SIL3 applications in various applications. They can be easily integrated into the controller.

Benefit from our safety controllers for complex applications that enable integration into Profisafe and Profinet networks. Safe shutdown, safe gas detection, and other functional safety functions can thus be implemented regardless of the manufacturer. In addition, our components provide surge protection. Cameras monitor the decentral infrastructure and security. We also support you with comprehensive training programs.

More about functional safety in the process industry
Explosion protection

The flammable gases that are generated, transported, and stored as part of power-to-X applications represent a key safety issue. If they escape unnoticed, an explosive or toxic atmosphere can develop. Appropriate sensor technology and gas detectors are necessary to warn personnel in such cases. In addition, factory traffic is not allowed to pass through these areas. To control the traffic, we couple your traffic light systems to the gas detectors via suitable transmission technology.

We provide a comprehensive selection of products and solutions for the requirements in potentially explosive areas. Our products range from PCB terminal blocks and PCB connectors through to Ex terminal blocks, Ex signal conditioners, and measuring transducers, all the way to surge protection and I/O systems.

More about explosion protection


Discover our explosion-proof, vibration, and temperature-resistant products for the hydrogen industry.

Pilot projects

In addition to transferring expertise from similar applications toward the power-to-X industry, we are already dedicating ourselves to specific, new applications.

Chemical industry park

Automation, electrification, and digitalization in the hydrogen industry

To increase the efficiency of an assembly line, we have, for example, equipped fuel cells with automation technology as part of the pilot projects. In order to contextualize the special requirements of such applications, we are working on pilot projects concerning electrolysis processes. To this end, we have taken over the complete automation of a pilot plant with the aim of significantly increasing output.

Would you like to learn more about our solutions for automation, electrification, and digitalization in the power-to-X industry? Feel free to contact us.


We are enabling the energy and climate transition together with our partners.

Hydrogen molecules with the EU flag

European Clean Hydrogen Alliance (ECH2A)

The European ECH2A platform for hydrogen projects was established by the European Union in July 2020. The aim is to promote the development and expansion of a hydrogen economy in Europe.

The ECH2A alliance is bringing stakeholders from business, politics, and civil society together to accelerate the development of a hydrogen economy in Europe and to promote agreements on the implementation of generation, transport, and distribution. It has more than 800 members, including European industrial companies, energy producers, investors, NGOs, associations, and research institutes, as well as municipalities, cities, and ministries. Together with ECH2A and its partners, we want to join forces to achieve the climate targets set in Europe.

The All Electric Society

Solutions for electrification, networking, and automation are our contribution to a world in which renewable energy is available for the benefit of everybody.

The All Electric Society
The All Electric Society YouTube

Technical solutions for a livable future

The All Electric Society is a world in which affordable electrical energy generated from renewable sources is available on a virtually unlimited basis as the main form of energy. The key to making this world a reality is the comprehensive electrification, networking, and automation of all sectors of the economy and infrastructure.

With our smart products and innovative solutions in the fields of automation, electrification, and digitalization, we are empowering industry and society to forge ahead with this transformation as we move toward a sustainable world.

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