H2FC Supergen Research Conference – in review

On 8 & 9 June 2022, over 120 delegates from the length and breadth of the UK’s hydrogen fuel cell research community descended on the University of St Andrews for our first in-person research gathering since 2020. Hosted at the impressive Gateway building – opposite the famous Old Course – attendees enjoyed 2 days packed with presentations that shared the latest hydrogen fuel cell and associated hydrogen energy research.

Main Plenary

As part of the main plenary sessions, Prof. Tim Mays and Prof. Sara Walker introduced their respective UKRI-funded projects, UK HyRes and UK HiACT. Tim’s team look to identify and tackle the research challenges blocking the wider use of low-carbon fuels in the UK.  Sara’s team will work to deliver a fundamental shift in critical lifecycle analysis for optimisation of operational and planning decision support for the integration of hydrogen and alternative fuels into the UK energy landscape. A key message for both projects was the requirement for collaboration and significant stakeholder engagement – find out the ways to get involved through the respective weblinks above.

Our plenary sessions also heard from Prof. Anthony Kucernak, Imperial College and Bramble Energy – who shared his experience in taking research from the lab to a company. A key takeaway is a need for improved support for academics to help them commercialise scientific research breakthroughs in the real world.  Dr Qiong Cai, University of Surrey rounded off the sessions with a superb overview of hydrogen electrolyser technologies and how they can be coupled to renewables in future energy systems.

Slides from both plenaries are available to download from our Digital Delegate Page.

Research Presentations

Outside of the main plenary sessions over 40 researchers from universities, institutions, organisations and companies across the UK took part in parallel sessions covering a whole range of fuel cell research and related topics. From our core themes around hydrogen fuel cell discoveries in electrolyser and chemical engineering research to wider clean energy issues – such as monitoring emissions from a future hydrogen supply chain – the range of presentations was truly diverse.  Slide decks authorised by their authors for public release are available on our Digital Delegate Page using the Download PDF link underneath each title.

Poster exhibition and prize winner

Our poster exhibition took place at St Andrews’s historic College Halls on the evening of June 7. The conversational buzz in the room – and the fact that we had to delay the start of the following gala dinner by 1/2 an hour was a testament to the success of the exhibitors.

Our poster prize of £200 – sponsored by IOP publishing and judged by the H2FC Co-directors  – was won by Dylan Tawse, a Chemistry PhD Student at the University of Aberdeen. Dylan’s poster Ionic Conduction in Hexagonal Perovskite Derivatives impressed the judges by being clear, easy to read, visually inviting and with good science.