6th January 2020 | Posted by: Daniel Birkett | Industry News

A pilot project to inject hydrogen into an existing gas network at Keele University is now underway, the first trial of its kind in the UK.

The scheme, known as HyDeploy is a live demonstration which feeds 20% of zero carbon hydrogen in to the Keele University’s existing natural gas network. The network is connected to 100 homes and 30 faculty buildings and is the first trial of its kind in the UK.

The £7m flagship project has been backed by Ofgem’s Network Innovation Competition and will be managed by Cadent, in partnership with Keele University, Northern Gas Networks, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Science Division, ITM Power and Progressive Energy.

As Keele University owns and operates its own private gas network, it was deemed to be the most suitable location to carry out the trial as it can easily be disconnected from the National Grid.

Domestic and commercial heating accounts for around 50% of the UK’s energy consumption and produces 1/3 of the nation’s carbon emissions. 83% of UK households are still reliant on gas to meet their heating needs so innovations are required to help lower the carbon footprint of the gas network.

Developers working on HyDeploy estimate that around six million tonnes of CO2 could be saved every year if a 20% hydrogen blend is implemented across the country – this equates to removing two and a half million cars from our roads.

Chief Safety and Strategy Officer for Cadent, Ed Syson said: “It is impossible to overstate the importance of this trial to the UK – this is the first ever practical demonstration of hydrogen in a modern gas network in this country.

“Hydrogen can help us tackle one of the most difficult sources of carbon emissions – heat. This trial could pave the way for a wider rollout of hydrogen blending, enabling consumers to cut carbon emissions without changing anything that they do.

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