University of St Andrews drives hydrogen innovation

The University of St Andrews has partnered together with the University of Strathclyde and  Transport Scotland to create the Hydrogen Accelerator, a new initiative that will drive innovation in hydrogen technology and encourage knowledge-sharing to support transport applications and sustainable mobility in this important low carbon sector.

Hydrogen-based technologies have applications in transport, such as the development of Scotland’s first hydrogen-powered train, in industry and as a source of heat. Translating Hydrogen into Action is a collaborative project based at the University of St Andrews, that will assist companies throughout the hydrogen supply chain, from fuel cell manufacturers to energy specialists, with the aim of creating a strong manufacturing base of hydrogen-based component parts in Scotland. There’s potential for this new fuel to support 300,000 Scottish jobs.

Scotland’s first hydrogen powered train, a product of this over-arching project, is converted from a ScotRail Class 314 and is expected to be unveiled at the end of 2021. The entire rail freight must be decarbonised by 2035 and hydrogen offers a practical alternative to rail lines that cannot be electrified. This research project tests the feasibility of converting existing rolling stock from diesel and it will bring the skills necessary for the future of the rail industry here to Scotland.