Five projects will benefit from a share of £32.9m ($39.7m) in the second phase of the Longer Duration Energy Storage (LODES) competition to develop technologies that can store energy as heat, electricity, or low-carbon energy carriers like hydrogen.

Under the competition, EDF UK R&D, in partnership with the University of Bristol, Urenco, and the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), will receive £7.73m ($9.3m) to develop a hydrogen storage demonstrator utilising depleted uranium.

H2 View understands the project dubbed, HyDUS, at UKAEA’s Culham Science Centre in Oxfordshire, will see electricity converted into hydrogen via electrolysis and stored for future use, either directly as hydrogen, or converted back to electricity via a fuel cell.

Commenting on the project, Patrick Dupeyrat, Director of EDF R&D UK, said, “Hydrogen is an exciting and provable future solution for the UK’s energy industry. Following the launch of this project, our demonstration technology will be a world first, allowing us to utilise depleted uranium to store hydrogen and provide grid flexibility.

“The UK’s Net Zero future needs hydrogen and nuclear in the mix, and HyDUS, which innovatively combines the two, makes perfect sense. We have every confidence that HyDUS will succeed and are delighted that the government has backed the project with critical research funding.”

Other projects include battery storage, thermal storage, and hydropower storage.

Graham Stuart, UK Minister for Climate, commented, “Accelerating renewables is key to boosting our energy resilience. Energy storage helps us get the full benefit of these renewables, improving efficiency and helping drive down costs in the long term.

“This £32.9m Government backing will enable green innovators across the UK to develop this technology, helping create new jobs and encouraging private investment, while also safeguarding the UK’s energy security.”

Pink is the new green: Hydrogen’s role at the Sizewell C nuclear plant in the UK

One of the most promising characteristics of hydrogen is that it can be produced through a range of different energy pathways. This allows hydrogen to be created in tangent with already established energy applications.

Many couple hydrogen production with a range of renewable energy sources, such as hydro plants, wind and solar energy, which can all be used to create the cleanest hydrogen variant of them all – green hydrogen. However, according to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), one of the most promising methods of creating hydrogen is through nuclear energy.

Nuclear energy contains all the correct credentials to mass produce hydrogen through electrolysis. Not only does it produce steam which can be utilised within an electrolyser for the production of hydrogen, but the vast amounts of energy from the nuclear reactor can itself provide significant energy to power the electrolyser. The resulting product from the nuclear-powered electrolyser is a unique variant – pink hydrogen…

Click here to keep reading.