EU project tests hydrogen as flexible local energy solution

Published on 31.03.2019

Looking at creative clean energy solutions for EU islands, the EU-funded project BIG HIT aims to demonstrate the use of hydrogen as a flexible local energy store and vector, transporting hydrogen by tube trailer to the mainland near the Scottish island of Orkney. Here it will be used to demonstrate real end-use applications for hydrogen, including auxiliary power and heat for ferries in Kirkwall harbour, fuelling a fleet of hydrogen range-extended light vehicles, and heating for buildings in the Kirkwall area.

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. Twelve partners from Denmark, France, Italy, Malta, Spain and the UK are participating in this collaborative project. 

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. The learning from BIG HIT about the benefits of using hydrogen with renewable energy sources in the Orkney Islands aims to support the much wider replication and further deployments of renewable energy with fuel cell & hydrogen technologies in isolated or constrained territories.  

You can find out more about the BIG HIT project here.