ETP Energy Expertise

Wind EnergyTransportSolar Energy

Oil and GasMarine EnergyEnergy Policy, People and Scociety

Heat EnergyBioenergyEnergy Conversion and Storage

Carbon Capture and StorageEnergy Distribution & InfrastructureEnergy Utilisation in Buildings

For more information


Prof Graeme Cooke
ETP Batteries & Solar Theme Champion

Dr Thomas Jones
ETP Batteries & Solar Deputy Theme Champion

Liam McCarron
ETP Energy Conversion & Storage Business Development Manager



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Batteries and Solar

Research and innovation in energy storage is becoming increasingly important due to the increasing energy demand for economic and social development and it is fast becoming one of the principal challenges facing the energy sector.  Energy storage can be defined as simply storing energy generated during periods of low demand to use during periods of high demand.

ETP Expertise in Batteries and Solar

Electrical energy can be used to produce gaseous and liquid fuels as well as feedstock chemicals. Potential applications include converting off-peak renewable electricity to hydrogen for injection into the gas network, road fuel and other applications. ETP universities are studying the electrolyser-grid interface, efficient high temperature electrolysis and new ceramic oxide electrode materials.

Fuel Cells 

Fuel cells convert fuels into electricity and heat. The various fuel cell types allow varied applications in electrical grid management, long range electric vehicles and even in household heat and power generation. ETP has research in; new materials for use in Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFC); the integration of renewables and hydrogen; new ceramic proton conductors and new materials for advanced alkaline fuel cells. 

Hydrogen Storage Materials 

If hydrogen is to be used as an energy vector it must be cheaply and safely, stored and transported. This area includes research into; the electrochemical synthesis of ammonia for energy storage; lithium nitrides, imides and amides as lightweight, reversible hydrogen stores and sustainable materials processing. Other significant applications of gas storage materials include sensors and drug delivery.


Waste heat, generated by vehicle engines, can be scavenged to provide on-board electricity. ETP has expertise in new thermoelectric materials including layered semiconductors, Zintle phases, and framework solids as well as in device design and integration.


Batteries are critical for electric vehicles and will become increasingly important in managing diverse and unpredictable renewable generation on the electricity grid. ETP has academics studying advanced materials for lithium ion batteries, redox flow batteries and potentially step-change battery technologies such as lithium-air.


The scientists within ETP embrace many different disciplines including Chemical and materials synthesis, Chemical and materials characterization, Electrochemistry Heterogeneous catalysis Surface characterisation Systems design, Computer simulation and modelling and Process engineering


ETP universities are engaged in a number of collaborative programs involving academics and industry from across the UK and beyond including: Supergen, ETP is engaged in the energy storage, delivery of sustainable hydrogen and fuel cell programs; Horizon 2020, this is a European program investigating Sulphur, Carbon, and re-Oxidation Tolerant Anodes and Anode Supports for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells; and SHFCA, the Scottish Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association, a body promoting Scottish capability in the hydrogen and fuel cell sector.

Batteries & Solar Facilities

Facilities of particular relevance to energy conversion and storage are:

Facility Name


Scottish Institute for Solar Energy research

Herriot watt University

Scottish Energy Centre (SEC)

Edinburgh Napier University

Fuel Cell Laboratory

University of Strathclyde

Electrical Power Systems Protection Laboratory

University of Strathclyde

Power Networks Demonstration Centre (PNDC)

University of Strathclyde

Energy Technology Test Facilities

University of Strathclyde

Integrated Energy Materials Process and Characterisation Facility

University of St Andrews

New Energy Materials Test Facility

University of St Andrews

Li-ion Battery Development Test Facility

University of St Andrews

Hydrogen Laboratory

University of Highlands and Islands

ETC – Renewable and Low Carbon Energy Test Facility

Energy Technology Centre

ETC- Mechanical Test Facility

Energy Technology Centre

Myres Hill National Wind Energy Test Site


Thermal Engineering Test facility


BRE Innovation Park Ravenscraig

Building Research institute (BRE)



Batteries & Solar - Case Study

Ceimig Ltd - A spin out from the University of St Andrews. Ceimig manufacture fine chemicals including catalysts. One of the products that they sell is a Platinum based catalyst for use in PEM fuel cells. The product currently has several issues (i) the platinum catalyst is embedded on carbon and degrades in operation; (ii) the catalyst surface area can be improved for better performance and (ii) the catalyst is mobile within the electrochemical cell and can cause short circuiting in the cell.

An ETP supported project with the University of St Andrews has allowed the company to look at the catalyst and the support material. Through two analytical techniques, Ceimig has been able to develop a mechanism of producing a more stable catalyst with a good surface area.

While further work is required to address all the issues, Ceimig are in a stronger position to develop and market their new product. 




If you would like to find out more about what ETP can do for companies in the Energy Conversion & Storage field contact


Case Study - Cascade Technologies Ltd.

Cascade Technologies, a manufacturer of high-technology laser based gas analysers were identified as a Scottish SME who would benefit for ETP support.

The ECS BDM approached them to establish how the ETP KEN project might assist them. Cascade had already identified hydrogen fuel and carbon capture and storage as key areas where new markets might emerge. However, Cascade lacked expertise and contacts in these fields. The BDM made introductions to relevant academic and business contacts. It became clear there were opportunities for Cascade's technology in the hydrogen fuels sector and the BDM proposed an application to the TSB (now Innovate-UK) for funding. The BDM provided support in building the project team, and assisted with the application, which was successful.

The consortium comprises Cascade Technologies, end users BOC and ITM Power and the University of St Andrews who are now collaborating on the development a new tool for the quality assurance of hydrogen fuel. This new laser based approach could mean real-time online chemical analysis of fuel impurities at the fuel pump, without the need for a scientist or laboratory. The Company’s proprietary systems have the capability to measure up to 20 different gases simultaneously, in real-time, at much higher speed and accuracy than any other product on the market This fit-and-forget technology promises to dramatically increase the confidence which tomorrow's drivers can expect to have in their fuel.

The support provided through the KEN project has resulted in major benefits to this Scottish SME, since they have not only received a grant of £602k from Innovate-UK but are working closely with end users in a new market for their technology.



EU funding opportunities available in Scotland can be found at:

  • There is also a catalogue of projects which have already been funded in Scotland via the EU.
The Interreg Europe programme financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) aims to improve the implementation of regional development policies and programmes, in particular programmes for Investment for Growth and Jobs and European Territorial Cooperation (ETC) programmes. 
Information about the Interreg programmes can be found at:
  • These support projects that explore and evaluate the technical potential of an early-stage idea or concept through technical feasibility studies in the energy sector with the aim to establish if a pre-industrial concept is ready for further technology development. Projects may receive between £50,000 and £300,000 for up to one year. The total budget of the programme is £10 million.