Industry News

PEM-based green hydrogen electrolyzer installed at University of Sheffield to support decarbonization of the aviation sector

by | Aug 21, 2023

The University of Sheffield claims that it will produce more green hydrogen than any other UK research center, following a new PEM-based green hydrogen electrolyzer being installed at the University’s Sustainable Aviation Fuels Innovation Centre (SAF-IC) to support the decarbonization of the aviation industry. 

The new technology – from IMI Remosa (under the new brand IMI VIVO) – produces hydrogen by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen, and will be used to conduct research and development on hydrogen-based sustainable aviation fuels (SAFs). The SAF-IC is said to be the UK’s first R&D facility capable of developing, testing, validating and helping to certify new fuels under one roof. It will play a vital role in helping reduce the environmental impact of air travel.

Researchers from Sheffield will work in collaboration with aviation industry partners to develop new hydrogen and CO2-based fuels that meet strict aviation standards. The team will also work with additional UK-based industries and companies to help them switch to alternative and more sustainable fuels.

The newly installed PEM electrolyzer will enable the University to produce approximately 140Nm3 per hour of green hydrogen with a storage capacity of 1450Nm3.

“In order to drive forward a decarbonized future, we must understand more about the possibilities and capabilities of green hydrogen, particularly with regards to sustainable aviation fuels,” explained Professor Mohamed Pourkashanian, director of the University of Sheffield’s Energy Institute. “With this new electrolyzer at our SAF-IC facility, we can work with industry and fellow academics to discover and demonstrate the best way to make a hydrogen economy, and a greener future, a reality.”

Pourkashanian added, “We are thrilled to have the capacity to produce the green hydrogen in our site, so that our research and development into SAFs (especially via Power-To-SAF), industrial fuel switching and decarbonization can continue.”

Giuseppe Buscemi, president, IMI Critical Engineering Europe, said, “The aviation industry is responsible for around 7% of the UK’s total carbon emissions and this figure continues to rise. Developing new fuels and solutions will therefore be essential to reversing this trend and decarbonizing the sector.

“We are proud that the IMI VIVO electrolyzer will prove vital to upgrading the University of Sheffield’s research and development capabilities, helping break the aviation industry’s reliance on fossil fuels. We expect this technology, both here and in other applications, to play a pivotal role in reducing emissions across multiple sectors as part of our commitment to providing breakthrough engineering for a better world.”

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