Hydrogen and SZC

Hydrogen and nuclear

Why does Sizewell C want to produce hydrogen?

Nuclear is a great way of producing hydrogen as it generates huge amounts of reliable, low-carbon energy. Nuclear and hydrogen are also two clean technologies that can help us make big reductions in carbon emissions. While both technologies are vital on their own, at Sizewell C we have an exciting vision to bring them together.

Bringing hydrogen and nuclear together

Nuclear generates always-on, low-carbon power and for years has provided around 20% of the UK’s electricity. Hydrogen only produces water when it burns and has great potential as a clean fuel for transport, industry, and home heating.

One of the best ways of producing hydrogen is by splitting water molecules using an electrolyser. Using low-carbon nuclear energy to power the electrolyser means we can produce hydrogen which has no carbon emissions.

Nuclear and hydrogen are both big priorities for the Government. They were included in the Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution and the 2020 Energy White Paper.

Clean energy solutions

At Sizewell C, we are exploring how we can produce and use hydrogen in several ways. We are working with Wrightbus on a pilot scheme which, if successful, could see thousands of workers transported to and from site on hydrogen double decker buses. You can read more about the pilot scheme in our press release

Firstly, it could help lower emissions during construction of the power station. Secondly, once Sizewell C is operational, we hope to use some of the heat it generates (alongside electricity) to make hydrogen more efficiently.

Additional technologies

Sizewell C is already set to be one of the biggest Net Zero projects in the UK. Linking it to other low-carbon technologies can bring even more flexibility and value to the energy system. Our plans could support the local economy and stimulate a low-carbon hydrogen and direct air capture market in the East of England.

Once operational, Sizewell C could produce hydrogen for a variety of uses including:

Sizewell C

Powering up to 150 hydrogen buses for our construction workforce

Sizewell C

Our refuelling & maintenance hubs could be used by other road users and could create a market for local hydrogen production

Sizewell C

During construction, hydrogen could power vehicles & machinery

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CO2 extracted by DAC can be combined with hydrogen to make Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF)

"By using spare heat to enable some of the other low-carbon technologies needed alongside nuclear, Sizewell C will become a flexible energy hub and provide even greater value for energy users." Julia Pyke, Sizewell C's Joint Managing Director