A 2024 guide to hydrogen power systems for construction

A 2024 guide to hydrogen power systems for construction

Hydrogen power systems for the construction industry are suitable for a range of applications, including powered access, welfare cabins, lighting towers, and standby power. For these zero-emission systems to be viable within this sector, they need to be robust, efficient and deliver at least as much productivity as their diesel counterparts.

So, what do you need to know about hydrogen fuel cell power for the construction industry in 2024?

Hydrogen power systems and net zero targets

Net Zero targets have been put in place by governments and organisations around the world to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, ensuring that any emissions are balanced by removals. The overall aim of the strategy is to meet the Paris Agreement goal of keeping the global average temperature increase well below 2°c.

The UK government has also put together a guide to the UK’s Net Zero strategy to end the domestic contribution to climate change and promote a more sustainable future.

In light of the UK’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and global efforts too, many industries are turning to hydrogen fuel cell systems as a greener alternative to fossil fuels. This includes the construction industry, which is one of the most polluting industries in the UK.

Construction equipment that could benefit from hydrogen power systems

There are many types of construction equipment that could benefit from hydrogen powered fuel cell systems, including:

  • Mobile lighting towers
  • MEWPs (or “Cherry-pickers”) and other powered access equipment
  • Portable generators
  • Off-grid / portable CCTV systems
  • Welfare Cabins for temporary accommodation, or WCs (such as the Ecosmart Zero Welfare Cabin that utilises IE-POWER)

What are the impacts of using diesel power over clean energy alternatives in construction?

The use of diesel generators on construction sites can have health and safety implications for workers, local residents, and the local environment:

1.      Noise

The construction industry poses a very high risk for noise related health conditions, as mentioned by the Health and Safety Executive, and diesel-powered construction tools like generators, ,  excavators, and other heavy plant, for example, can be extremely loud and lead to permanent hearing damage and tinnitus.

2.      Particulate emissions

A report from the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health shows that the construction industry is responsible for 18% of the UK’s large particle pollution, second only to road transport. Large particulate pollution is a big issue in London currently, and so guidelines have been set up at large construction sites within the region to reduce large particle emissions to help manage the issue. There are also minimum standards set for non-road mobile machines, like diesel-powered generators, and diggers, with some Tier 1 contractors transitioning to diesel-free construction sites.

The majority of large particulate matter is released during the earthwork and foundation stages of a construction project, according to a paper from the National Library of Medicine. These particles are solids and liquids and have been found in surrounding areas, leading to cardiovascular, respiratory, and skin diseases amongst workers and local residents.

Our range of hydrogen power systems for construction

Hydrogen fuel cell power systems can help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by replacing diesel-powered equipment and machinery on construction sites. Our IE-POWER range offers clean, near silent power from 1kW-32kW, resulting in zero emissions and reduced noise.

IE-POWER 4 is our high-power density, modular, low maintenance and lightweight solution producing zero emissions and ensuring daily high performance. The fuel cell modules within the IE-POWER range are compact, robust, and are ideal for portable power generation, backup power and industrial trucks.

Hydrogen power systems offer a range of benefits for the construction sector, including improved efficiency, reduced noise, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions, and your business could benefit by making the switch in 2024!

If you’d like to find out more about using hydrogen power systems for construction, get in touch with our team of experts today. Please fill out a contact form with details of your enquiry, or email us at sales@intelligent-energy.com. Our team is happy to help!