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Hydrogen Innovation Initiative


The hydrogen opportunity

Hydrogen holds significant importance in the UK’s energy sector due to its potential to decarbonise various industries. As a versatile energy carrier, hydrogen can be produced from renewable sources offering a clean alternative to fossil fuels. A well-established hydrogen supply chain ensures reliable production, distribution, and utilisation of hydrogen, facilitating the transition to a low-carbon economy.

With £400 million investment in hydrogen projects over the next three years from the government to boost its potential as an alternative energy source, Digital Catapult is supporting a range of organisations to accelerate hydrogen preparedness and transparency throughout the hydrogen supply chain.

Through our work as part of the Hydrogen Innovation Initiative (HII), Digital Catapult has engaged with 30 organisations across the hydrogen supply chain to accelerate their market readiness, helping to sharpen the UK’s competitive edge in hydrogen innovation.

The Hydrogen Innovation Initiative

The Hydrogen Innovation Initiative is a collaborative effort aimed at advancing the development and deployment of hydrogen technologies to address pressing energy and environmental challenges. This initiative brings together key stakeholders from government, industry, research institutions, and the private sector to accelerate the transition to a hydrogen-based economy. Digital Catapult joined as a founding member to unlock the potential of advanced digital technology in the hydrogen supply chain.

Key benefits

The use of hydrogen in the UK offers a wide range of environmental, economic, and social benefits, supporting the country to achieve its Net Zero targets, enhance energy security, and promote sustainable development. Some of the key benefits include:

  • Decarbonisation – Harnessing hydrogen technologies facilitates the transition to a low-carbon future, significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Energy security – Adoption of hydrogen enhances energy resilience by diversifying energy sources and reducing dependence on fossil fuels.
  • Air quality improvement – Utilising hydrogen technologies mitigates air pollution, promoting cleaner and healthier environments for communities.
  • Economic growth – Investment in hydrogen fosters job creation and innovation, driving sustainable growth across industries.
  • Energy transition – Incorporating hydrogen technologies accelerates the shift towards renewable energy sources, paving the way for a more sustainable and cleaner future.


The Hydrogen Innovation Initiative focuses on several sectors where hydrogen technologies can play a significant role in addressing energy and environmental challenges. Sectors of particular focus are:

  • Hydrogen production
  • Hydrogen distribution and storage
  • Energy networks
  • Offshore
  • Renewables
  • Foundation industries
  • Chemical industries
  • Power generation
  • Aerospace
  • Automotive
  • Maritime


HII partners lockup 1 colour


Hydrogen Sensor Accelerator programme

Digital Catapult’s Hydrogen Sensor Accelerator is a pioneering eight-week programme translating the UK strategy for hydrogen technology developed with industry-wide input and partners including the Catapult Network, the Aerospace Technology Institute, the Net Zero Technology Centre and the National Physical Laboratory.

The programme offers a unique opportunity for five startups engaged in sensor development, both within and beyond the hydrogen sector, to accelerate the preparedness of sensors for the hydrogen sector and support standardisation as well as to access a platform for advancing the hydrogen supply chain.

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Everything you need to know about hydrogen technology

Hydrogen has long been touted as the answer to replacing natural gas in electricity production, allowing individuals and organisations to continue to use electricity but with zero carbon emissions, in everything from the production of metals, ceramics, glass, cement, and industrial chemicals, to greener transportation over land, air, and sea without reliance on burning fossil fuels. 85% of UK homes and 40% of the country’s electricity currently rely on gas.

Digital Catapult is playing a vital role in supporting the nascent hydrogen infrastructure sector in the UK. From developing certification processes to supporting startups working on innovative sensors, and project-financing tools, we’re also establishing an information hub to centralise knowledge and resources.

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