National Nuclear Laboratory


Monday 2 October 2023

Exciting developments for nuclear derived hydrogen

The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero has announced £6.1 million for the Bay Hydrogen Hub project, in which nuclear derived hydrogen will be used to decarbonise the production of asphalt. This funding is provided through the Industrial Hydrogen Accelerator Programme, part of the government’s £1 billion Net Zero Innovation Portfolio (NZIP), which provides funding for low-carbon technologies and systems.

National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) will work with lead organisation EDF, and construction materials producer Hanson and Vulcan Burners. The team will develop a pilot project for hydrogen production from a Solid Oxide Electrolysis Cell electrolyser at the Heysham 2 power station. The hydrogen will replace the current mix of liquid fossil fuels used at Hanson’s asphalt plant in Wales.

Gareth Headdock, Vice President of Government and New Build, National Nuclear Laboratory, said: “This project places the UK as a global leader in the development of nuclear enabled hydrogen. We are really excited to see this new application of nuclear energy, along with the increasing investment in advanced nuclear. As we invest in the next generation of scientists and engineers, the Bay Hydrogen Hub is building the skills we need for our hydrogen future.”

Cement and asphalt production is a major contributor to global carbon emissions. NNL and partners are leading the way in helping these hard-to-decarbonise sectors to reach net zero.