A new programme has been launched to support and foster the creation of a new hydrogen economy in the UK’s Midlands.
‘HyDEX’ brings together the Energy Research Accelerator (ERA) university partners with multinational businesses, SMEs, and others.
The aim of HyDEX is to accelerate innovation in hydrogen, build markets and the supply chain, and support the skills needed for the new hydrogen economy.
The £5m programme is funded via the RED Fund scheme, run by Research England, and will run for three years.
The ERA university partners will make their hydrogen facilities and expertise available to regional businesses.
A joint effort
Various industrial partners are also involved in HyDEX.
These include: Worcester-Bosch and Cadent (hydrogen boilers and gas networks); Intelligent Energy (fuel cells); Toyota (hydrogen vehicles); FAUN Zoeller (heavy vehicles); Cenex, ENGIE (Hydrogen Networks); Progressive Energy, ITM Motive (hydrogen generation and transport respectively); Siemens and ENGIE (hydrogen production and storage).
The universities involved in the programme include Keele (project lead), Aston, Birmingham, Cranfield, Loughborough, Nottingham, and Warwick.
Civic partners such as the Midlands Engine, LEPs, local government and local authorities, will also add their weight to support the creation of a market for low-carbon hydrogen solutions as part of the net-zero transition.
Professor Mark Ormerod, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Provost of Keele University, which is leading the programme, commented: “We are very excited to be launching the HyDEX programme and leading it from Keele University.
“At Keele we have been leading the way in researching the use of hydrogen in the domestic gas heating system and in smart energy systems.
“This experience and expertise, when combined with the wealth of knowledge in the ERA partnership and our collaborators will enable HyDEX to make a significant impact on the use of hydrogen in the future.”
Professor Martin Freer, Director of the Energy Research Accelerator, added: “The ERA universities have invested significantly in hydrogen infrastructure, creating an array of great facilities and demonstration projects.
“The HyDEX programme will see experts from our universities, working with Midlands’ businesses to use these facilities to develop new, innovative products.”
Image credit: TierneyMJ/Shutterstock
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