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Saving on Fuel Using Hydrogen Technology

David Barron of Nether Aden in Aberdeenshire worked with us on the Climate Change Focus Farm project.

One of the things David encouraged us to explore as part of the project was the use of hydrogen technology, namely to retrofit of a hydrogen electrolyser to the farm telehandler.  David estimates that the hydrogen electrolyser has saved him 20% on his fuel costs.  David said, “I’m totally sold on the technology, the unit has worked so well, and now that the price has come down to £1,000 each I’ve paid to have two more installed - one on another tractor and one in my jeep.”  In addition to the 20% fuel saving for all three vehicles, he has also seen other benefits.  “There’s certainly more torque when you drive the tractors in a higher gear, which is very like driving a superior horsepower vehicle and added to this, there are no emissions - there’s just nothing coming out of the lum.”

In monetary terms, the savings for David Barron’s telehandler – the first machine to be converted – equate to 1,083 litres of fuel, equivalent to 43,440kg CO2 and £596 annually, worth £2,980 over a five-year period. It was installed by a small business called Water Fuel Engineering from South Yorkshire, who suggest a reduction in fossil fuels of circa 20-25% and an 80% cut in vehicle emissions.

You can read more about David's experience with the HydroGen retrofit in his case study on the Farming for a Better Climate webpages here.

 

Aberdeenshire Farmers Investigate Hydrogen

Following on from the success of the HydroGen retrofit onto farm vehicles under Farming for a Better Climate, David Barron and a group of likeminded Aberdeenshire farmers were interested to know more and look at what opportunities existed to take this technology further. With the two biggest bills being fuel and fertiliser, could both be tackled by hydrogen?

A subsequent project funded by the Rural Innovation Support Service (RISS) has brought together six Aberdeenshire farmers to explore further applications of the technology, including how to use surplus energy from farm wind turbines. We had hoped to report on the findings in this newsletter, but with an unexpected change in the regulations around RTFO (Renewable Transport Fuel Obligations), it put a different take on our findings and may make future projects more viable. We hope to post our findings on the FFBC page.  You can read more about the RISS at www.innovativefarmers.org/welcometoriss/