Aston University has received a £300,000 grant from the Wolfson Foundation to develop the first integrated lab-scale centre for low-carbon hydrogen production from biomass.
The groundbreaking research centre will explore novel methods for green hydrogen production using biomass conversion. The state-of-the-art facility will elevate the university to the summit of hydrogen production research, enabling the UK to reap the benefits of renewable energy technologies and boost the hydrogen economy.
Professor Aleks Subic, the Vice-Chancellor of Aston University, commented: “This new centre will help strengthen Aston University’s place as a national and global centre of expertise for future energy. It will build on existing relationships with our industrial partners, facilitate future research collaborations, as well as support the teaching of our students to make them better equipped to tackle one of the grand challenges of the 21st century. We are extremely grateful to the Wolfson Foundation for their continued support and for helping make this centre possible.”
How will the centre revolutionise low-carbon hydrogen production?
The sizeable funding will allow the university to obtain cutting-edge equipment for gasification, membrane separation, and fuel cells. The equipment will be installed at the university’s Energy and Bioproducts Research Institute (EBRI).
This industry-leading facility performs research to identify novel methods for converting biomass into renewable energy sources through employing thermochemical, biological, and catalytic processes.
The new research centre will facilitate national and international collaborations to further technology for low-carbon hydrogen production and potential uses for this exciting clean energy alternative. The centre’s research aims will target expediting the UK Government’s ambitions of reaching net zero by 2050 and will be critical in advancing future sustainable energy globally.
Professor Patricia Thornley, the Director of EBRI, said: “We are delighted to receive this generous grant which will help place EBRI at the forefront of hydrogen technology development in the UK. Researchers have a crucial role to play in supporting new energy technologies, and this new facility will contribute to the government’s 2050 net zero targets.
“As well as all the new opportunities this holistic and novel approach will bring, it will involve diverse stakeholders, including policymakers, academics, and industrialists. I am looking forward to using the new facilities to support industrialists and developers in progressing technology scale-up in this important area.”
The Wolfson Foundation is furthering the UK’s green energy arsenal
The Wolfson Foundation has awarded various lucrative grants in the fields of science, medicine, health, education, and arts and humanities to finance new buildings, refurbishments, and equipment. The grant will ensure that Aston University and EBRI researchers are comprehensively supported in developing the new green hydrogen production centre.
Paul Ramsbottom, the chief executive of the Wolfson Foundation, said: “Aston University’s Energy and Bioproducts Research Institute is well-placed to support the UK’s continuing journey towards achieving net zero. We are delighted to be supporting new facilities which will help them deepen their collaboration with industry in efforts to generate, store and utilise sustainable hydrogen as a viable alternative to fossil fuels. It is a crucial area of research.”