Ammonia-to-hydrogen project launches in Birmingham

(Left to right) Alex Goody, CEO of Gemserv, Emma Inch of Yara, Tommy Allsop of Tyesley Energy Park, David Horsfall of Tyesley Energy Park, Freddie Minter of Equans, Artur Majewski of University of Birmingham, Joanna Huddleston DESNZ, Casper Hadsbjerg of H2SITE, Azhar Juna of Gemserv, Ian Parker of Equans, Benoit Ouziel of Gemserv and Professor Martin Freer of University of Birmingham.

Described as the world’s largest and most efficient ammonia-to-hydrogen conversion project, the Ammogen consortium gathered at Tyseley Energy Park (TEP) on Tuesday 12 March to mark the initiative’s launch. The partners say it will drastically improve the efficiency, reliability, and economics of ammonia cracking, and will deliver 200kg per day of transport-grade hydrogen.

The project will use ammonia as a vector for transporting hydrogen globally, developing a novel ammonia cracker and purification technology to convert ammonia to hydrogen.

The project also aims to position ammonia cracking within the UK political thinking through demonstration and crystallise follow-on opportunities to unlock trade corridors between the UK and the emerging global hydrogen market.

The consortium is working in collaboration with the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, Gemserv, H2SITE, Equans, YARA, and the University of Birmingham.

“This transformative technology is an important piece in the hydrogen supply chain and provides an important link for meeting the growing global hydrogen demand using ammonia as a medium for shipping hydrogen,” said the group.

Speaking about the launch, Alex Goody, Chief Executive of consortium lead Gemserv said: “This project is about finding solutions for the transportation of Hydrogen across vast distances, essential in underpinning the Hydrogen economy. Ammogen shows that ammonia can be part of the solution.”

Speaking about the core technology, Jose Medrano, technical director of H2SITE said: “We are proud of having designed and constructed the largest ammonia cracker utilizing membrane reactor technology to produce fuel cell grade hydrogen. Ammogen project is a steppingstone for H2SITE, as it validates the fundamental technology we’ll use to scale to tons per day ammonia cracking in the next 2 years.”

The Ammogen project was selected through a competitive UK government funding scheme to develop a £6.7M project, which Gemserv developed and are leading, utilising the expertise of key technology providers, Ammonia supply chain and EPC (Engineering-Procurement-Construction) organisations. The project aligns with the country’s net-zero target policy.