Nova Innovation's tidal turbine (Courtesy of Nova Innovation)

Scots start exploring green hydrogen production using tidal energy

Scottish company Nova Innovation is heading up a consortium to look at the potential of producing green hydrogen and oxygen from its tidal energy projects in Shetland.

Nova Innovation's tidal turbine (Courtesy of Nova Innovation)
Nova Innovation's tidal turbine (Courtesy of Nova Innovation)
Nova Innovation’s tidal turbine (Courtesy of Nova Innovation)

The Scottish Government’s Emerging Energy Technologies Fund – Hydrogen Innovation Scheme will fund the GHOST Project, short for Green Hydrogen and Oxygen Supply from Tidal Energy.

The study will explore the use of hydrogen and oxygen for transport, domestic heating and industry in Shetland including the SaxaVord Space Centre. 

The contract will see Nova Innovation and partners the University of Strathclyde, Shetland Islands Council, and Ricardo Energy, investigate potential markets for both the hydrogen and oxygen produced from electrolysis using Scottish developer’s tidal energy projects in Shetland.

Oxygen, an oft discarded by-product of green hydrogen production, is already used in aquaculture on Shetland and has the potential to be used by the SaxaVord Space Centre, creating a 100% renewable rocket fuel.

Unlike conventional hydrogen production methods that rely on fossil fuels, green hydrogen generated from renewable power, is a clean and sustainable alternative that has the potential to revolutionise the energy industry and forms a key part of the Scottish Government’s energy strategy.

The GHOST Project will assess the potential for tidal energy projects around Yell, one of Scotland’s Carbon Neutral Islands, to deliver the predictable electricity required by electrolysers to make hydrogen and oxygen for Shetland.

Nova Innovation already operates the world’s first offshore tidal array in Bluemull Sound, to the north of Yell, and is developing a 15MW project in Yell Sound, to the south.

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The project will be advised by an Industrial Steering Group of local Shetland companies, SaxaVord Space Centre, Cooke Aquaculture and Voar Energy.

Simon Forrest, CEO at Nova Innovation, said:  “We are delighted to have won the GHOST Project, which will enable us to explore the potential for producing green hydrogen and oxygen utilising tidal power.

“We believe that green hydrogen will transform the energy industry, deliver huge benefits for the people of Shetland with heat and transport, as well as creating the possibility of green space flight.

“With the opportunity to bypass electricity grid constraints, hydrogen is a promising route to market for tidal energy and other renewables. The study will provide us with valuable insights into the role of green hydrogen and oxygen across Shetland.”

Frank Strang, CEO of SaxaVord Spaceport, added: “We are delighted to be involved in this innovative project, which aligns perfectly with our aspiration to create Europe’s leading sustainable spaceport and look forward to supporting Nova Innovation and the team.”

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