IMI VIVO electrolyser arrives at IAAPS’ hydrogen production and storage facility

25 July 2023

IAAPS’ green hydrogen production and storage facility, the first of its kind in the South West of England, is nearing completion following the successful delivery and installation of a new polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) electrolyser and hydrogen storage tank.

Supplied by IMI VIVO, a subsidiary of IMI Critical Engineering, the 42 ton storage tank and electrolyser were transported from Italy, where they were built, before being expertly crane lifted into place at the Bristol site.

The IMI VIVO electrolyser runs an electrical current through water via a membrane to split and separate hydrogen atoms. Delivery of the solution has greatly reduced the institute’s reliance on grey hydrogen for research purposes. The green H2 plant will be powered by an array of solar panels (Photovoltaics - PV) located on the roof of the IAAPS building, and will enable the operation of a 400-kw propulsion research facility. The facility is expected to be operational by mid-August.

“This is an important development for IAAPS as we assume a pioneering role in the hydrogen landscape. With efforts to decarbonise the transport sector gathering pace, it is evident that there is a critical requirement for R&I in H2 propulsion. Our new green hydrogen facility allows us to meet this need and provide vital H2 research capabilities,” says Professor Rob Oliver, Engineering Director, IAAPS.

“The research into hydrogen technology conducted on site will assist industry in the development of new, sustainable propulsion technologies that are fundamental to achieving clean mobility and meeting net zero targets. We are delighted to establish this new, industry-leading facility at IAAPS, which also marks a significant investment in the national green hydrogen economy. We are thankful for IMI VIVO’s support in specifying, supplying and installing this exciting technology.”

Any excess hydrogen produced by the electrolyser will be used in other applications within the IAAPS facility, such as powering boilers, lowering the building’s natural gas use, and aiding its transition to net zero emissions. This lead-by-example approach, alongside IAAPS’ research efforts in hard-to-electrify sectors such as aviation, marine, off-highway, and heavy-duty transport, will help the centre establish strategic partnerships across these industries.

“As well as being a cornerstone to IAAPS’ expansion and a major evolution in its remit and portfolio, the IMI VIVO Electrolyser has proven crucial to IAAPS solidifying its reputation as a leading adopter and supplier of sustainable solutions,” notes Jackie Hu, Divisional Managing Director at IMI Critical Engineering. “It is clear that IAAPS has great plans for both the electrolyser and its wider decarbonisation efforts, and we have been happy to help drive greener technologies and practices in the South West of England.”

25 July 2023