Hydrogen-Blend Gas Pilot Project Deployed Successfully at Keele University, UK

In a successful pilot, 100 homes and 30 university buildings on a private gas network at Keele University received the blended gas for a period of 18 months which ended in Spring 2021

HyDeploy, the first project in the UK to blend hydrogen into a natural gas network has been hailed a success in a report published recently. Customers used hydrogen-blended gas safely in their homes and without the need to make any changes to their existing appliances. 100 homes and 30 university buildings on a private gas network at Keele University received the blended gas for a period of 18 months which ended in Spring 2021.

Steve Fraser, Chief Executive of Cadent said: “HyDeploy is a ground-breaking collaboration and has demonstrated very clearly that consumers can safely receive up to 20% hydrogen blended with natural gas, without the need to make any changes to their existing appliances. With 8 in 10 of our homes in the UK heated by natural gas – it is an energy we are familiar with. Adopting hydrogen blending across the gas networks would save carbon emissions equivalent to removing 2.5m cars from our roads – a huge step towards Net Zero.”

Professor Trevor McMillan, Vice Chancellor of Keele University said: “We’re delighted that Keele University has been able to play a crucial role in blending hydrogen into the natural gas network. HyDeploy has been a perfect fit for Keele University’s sustainability ambitions as an institution we are proud to have been able to use our campus and involve our staff and residents in this landmark project.”

The success of the trial at Keele University has paved the way for a larger pilot project at Winlaton, near Gateshead where 668 houses, a school and some small businesses have been receiving hydrogen blended gas on a network operated by Northern Gas Networks (NGN) since early August 2021.

Mark Horsley, CEO at NGN said: “The results delivered by the Keele project gave the Health and Safety Executive the confidence to approve the first blending of hydrogen with natural gas on the public gas network. This next phase of HyDeploy will provide more vital evidence about the possibilities of blending hydrogen into the gas network across the UK, as an important stepping-stone to decarbonising heat.”

Heating homes and industry accounts for nearly half of all energy use in the UK and one third of the country’s carbon emissions. Across Europe, permitted levels of hydrogen in the gas supply vary, from 0.1% in the UK to up to 12% in parts of the Netherlands.