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Charley Rattan's picture
World Hydrogen Leader , Charley Rattan Associates

UK based offshore wind & hydrogen corporate advisor and trainer; Faculty member World Hydrogen Leaders. Delivering global hydrogen and offshore wind corporate investment advice, business...

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  • Aug 2, 2021

Testing underway on unique hydrogen distribution grid

The MicroGrid mirrors a typical UK distribution network and will be used to understand how gas distribution companies would manage and operate the networks under 100% hydrogen conditions.

Construction of the £1.8 million MicroGrid was funded from the £6.9 million grant awarded by Ofgem’s Network Innovation Competition as part of the H21 programme.

H21 is a suite of pioneering gas industry projects, aimed at proving that the existing gas network can be converted to transport 100% hydrogen, in order to support UK Climate Change Act obligations to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The MicroGrid comprises approximately one kilometre of pipework of varying pressure tiers and diameters, which will link to three demonstration houses featuring hydrogen boilers.

In 2022 the MicroGrid will also link to FutureGrid, a gas transmission test network being built at Spadeadam by National Grid with partners including NGN. At this point the network will represent a unique ‘beach to meter’ hydrogen demonstration facility.

Unlike natural gas, which is currently used by the 85% of UK households connected to the gas grid, hydrogen produces no carbon when used. With the government targeting zero carbon emissions by 2050, a hydrogen gas conversion could provide the most cost effective and least disruptive route to home heating for the majority of UK households.

The MicroGrid is being used to carry out rigorous testing procedures under 100% hydrogen conditions and make recommendations for any operational and maintenance procedures which will need to be updated for a hydrogen gas network.






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