Big step made in decarbonising industry as first hydrogen fired


The first hydrogen has been fired in a trial aiming to demonstrate alternative sustainable sources of fuel for industry. The ‘HyNet Industrial Fuel Switching’ (IFS) programme, led by Progressive Energy, will provide data and evidence to show how industry can switch from natural gas to low carbon, clean hydrogen.

The project milestone was celebrated with a real-time, live demonstration of hydrogen firing in a 1MW boiler at Dunphy Combustion’s test centre in Rochdale, Greater Manchester. Virtual attendees included staff from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (Beis) and Unilever. Both Unilever and NSG-Pilkington will be running their own demonstrations later this year, Unilever holding theirs in a live manufacturing environment, followed by a hydrogen firing demonstration on a glass production furnace at NSG-Pilkington in St Helens.

The demonstration programme will provide the evidence to support the suitability of hydrogen as a clean replacement fuel for industry, as part of HyNet North West. HyNet North West, the UK’s leading integrated hydrogen and carbon capture storage project, will start delivering carbon dioxide emissions savings by 2025. By 2030, it will be capable of removing up to 10 million tonnes of carbon from across North West England and North East Wales each year – the equivalent of taking four million cars off the road annually.

HyNet North West will bring employment and economic growth to the North West region, kick starting a low carbon hydrogen economy, protecting employment and creating over 6,000 new, permanent jobs, setting the region on course to be the world leader in clean energy innovation.

The HyNet Industrial Fuel Switching programme was awarded funding of £5.3M from Beis through its Energy Innovation Programme in February 2020.

Andy Burnham, Metro-Mayor for Greater Manchester said, “This hydrogen trial shows how the north west and Greater Manchester are at the forefront of the low carbon economy and that, working with Cadent and the HyNetNW project, we can deliver deep decarbonisation of society.

“The new hydrogen network will supply our industry with low carbon hydrogen, decarbonising our homes and vehicles and creating good jobs for the future which as part of our drive to deliver carbon neutrality by 2038”.


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