A hydrogen accelerator to help phase out the need for new petrol and diesel cars and vans over the next decade is to be located at St Andrews University.
The Scottish Government has confirmed it is investing £300,000 in the initiative, which will aim to develop innovations in the use of hydrogen technology and encourage the sharing of knowledge to support sustainable forms of transport.
Ministers believe by linking the project to expertise at other Scottish universities and tech centres, such as the Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc in Dundee and the Power Networks Distribution Centre in Strathclyde, a strategic hydrogen workforce will be created to support Scotland’s green recovery.
The centre will be situated at the university’s new Eden Campus in Guardbridge.
Michael Matheson, cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity, said: “With their renowned specialism in hydrogen technologies and innovation, this is a perfect match at a time when there is really exciting work in the sector taking place across Scotland.
“We already boast several world-leading demonstrator projects.
“These include Aberdeen’s hydrogen bus projects and the wide-ranging Orkney projects drawing on marine renewable energy to provide hydrogen for power generation, heating buildings and powering vehicles.
“With abundant renewable energy resources and a strong engineering skills base, Scotland is in a strong position to develop a globally competitive hydrogen sector.
“By establishing this hydrogen accelerator at the University of St Andrews, we’re ensuring that hydrogen technologies can be successfully implemented in an economically sustainable way to achieve Scotland’s decarbonisation and net-zero ambitions.”
Professor John Irvine, from St Andrews University, described the launch of the hydrogen accelerator as “excellent news”.
“We look forward to the accelerator team engaging with and mentoring hydrogen activities across the country so that we can best deliver a hydrogen enabled low-carbon economy.
“Hydrogen will be very important in our low-carbon future and we have considerable expertise at St Andrews in these kind of technologies.
“The accelerator will be located at our new Eden Campus development where we will be supporting the commercialisation of new technologies in energy conversion and storage, including hydrogen.
“It’s a great opportunity for us to engage with Scottish companies who are breaking into these new markets.”