Supercritical Solutions Ltd has successfully completed a 3-month feasibility study for its green hydrogen-based decarbonisation technology at Beam Suntory’s Ardmore distillery, located in Kennethmont, Aberdeenshire.
Supercritical’s ‘Project WhiskHy’ was one of just 17 green innovation projects to be awarded an initial grant from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in January 2021. Following the feasibility study, Supercritical is now in the running for a second round of funding from BEIS to develop, deploy and scale this technology at Ardmore over the next 3 years.
With “Project WhiskHy”, Supercritical has designed the world’s first supercritical, ultra-efficient, high pressure electrolyser, which would enable a distillery like Ardmore to produce and store hydrogen on site, powered only by the distillery’s wastewater and local renewable power sources. The green hydrogen can then be looped back into the distillery’s heat or power system to minimise, and ultimately eliminate, its reliance on fossil fuels. Supercritical’s initial feasibility study has demonstrated a clear pathway for the Ardmore distillery to become a zero-carbon distillery, reliant only on its local natural resources, by 2040. This technology would be the first of its kind and could be deployed across distilleries of all sizes, as well as other industries.
Supercritical, in partnership with Beam Suntory, the Centre for Process Innovation, Xodus Group and DNV, has issued a comprehensive report of its findings, which has also been submitted to BEIS. An executive summary of the WhiskHy report can be downloaded from supercritical.solutions/whiskhy.
Project WhiskHy is now in the process of bidding for a further grant from BEIS to allow it to build and deploy this technology at scale at the Ardmore distillery.
Matt Bird, chief executive at Supercritical adds, “Extracting hydrogen from the distillery wastewater using local renewable energy means we could eliminate carbon emissions from the distilling process at a lower cost than the fossil fuels used today.”
Luke Tan, chief product officer at Supercritical adds, “The WhiskHy feasibility study was a great opportunity to demonstrate the global reach and potential for Supercritical’s technology. With Phase 2 approved, Ardmore distillery will be the first of many to benefit from our UK developed high pressure, ultra-efficient green hydrogen solution.”
Alistair Longwell, senior manager, Scotch Distillation & Maturation Operations at Beam Suntory, adds, “Beam Suntory is proud to support the Scotch Whisky sector’s ambitious journey towards full decarbonisation, and we are delighted to support this innovative project. As part of our Proof Positive sustainability strategy, Beam Suntory is aiming to go beyond net zero carbon emissions across our value chain by 2040 – and technologies like Project WhiskHy will help us get there.”