BIG HIT (Building Innovative Green Hydrogen systems in an Isolated Territory) Celebrates Official Handover of Two Hydrogen Tube Trailers from Calvera at All-Energy 2018

BIG HIT (Building Innovative Green Hydrogen systems in an Isolated Territory) celebrates another milestone with the official handover of two hydrogen tube trailers from Calvera at All-Energy 2018.

These new trailers increase the Orkney fleet of hydrogen tube trailers to five, for the transportation of ‘green hydrogen’ safely and efficiently. This is a significant step towards creating a Hydrogen Territory in the Orkney Islands as part of the €10.9 million EU supported BIG HIT project.

The ‘green hydrogen’ is being produced on site at the European Marine Energy Centre on the northern Orkney island of Eday. The hydrogen is then transported to Kirkwall, mainland Orkney, using the fleet of Calvera hydrogen tube trailers carried on board the inter-island ferry service.

This locally produced ‘green hydrogen’ supplies the hydrogen fuel cell installed at Kirkwall Harbour and will also be used for the Orkney Islands Council fleet of five Symbio Kangoo fuel cell range extended zero emission vans.

The new Calvera tube trailers can each carry up to quarter of a tonne of hydrogen gas.

Nigel Holmes, CEO of SHFCA, and communications manager for BIGHIT said, “The delivery of these two hydrogen tube trailers is another important step by BIG HIT. This project is developing our low carbon energy systems capabilities in Scotland, and we are delighted to be part of this Europe-wide team.”

BIG HIT is demonstrating the important role of hydrogen and fuel cells for realising additional local benefits from renewable energy, and this great project will help many other islands and communities to achieve similar benefits.”

Neil Kermode, Managing Director of EMEC adds, “By piloting the generation of hydrogen from renewable energy sources, BIG HIT is helping avoid grid shortcomings, while supporting further development of renewable energy projects in Orkney. It is breaking through the barriers to delivering renewable transport and heat, opening up new markets around the world.”

BIG HIT builds on foundations laid by the Orkney Surf ‘n’ Turf initiative, which will see production of hydrogen on the islands of Eday and Shapinsay using wind and tidal energy.

Renewable electricity generated on the islands of Eday and Shapinsay is used by electrolysers to produce hydrogen, by electrolysis of water. This hydrogen is then stored as high pressure gas in the tube trailers, which can be transported to mainland Orkney.

BIG HIT uses two state-of-the-art proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolysers. The  Shapinsay electrolyser is 1MW capacity and Eday electrolyser is 0.5MW capacity, both located close to the renewable generation assets. The hydrogen acts as an energy-storage medium which can later be converted back into heat and power for buildings and vessels in Kirkwall harbour, as well as the fuel for the operation of zero-emission hydrogen vehicles in and around Kirkwall.

These two PEM electrolysers will produce about 50 tonnes of hydrogen each year from constrained renewables. This ‘zero carbon’ hydrogen can be used to heat local buildings, and will also be transported by sea ferry to Kirkwall in 5 hydrogen tube-trailers. In Kirkwall a 75 kW hydrogen fuel cell will supply heat and power for several harbour buildings, a marina and 3 ferries (when docked) in Kirkwall. And finally, a hydrogen refuelling station in Kirkwall will fuel the 10 Symbio hydrogen fuel cell road vehicles.

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