The UK Government has boosted five companies developing hydrogen technology and infrastructure with £14m ($18m) of funding.

The Hydrogen for Transport Programme (HTP) sets out the next steps to develop the UK hydrogen vehicle market, providing up to £23m ($29.5m) of new grant funding until 2020 to support the growth of refuelling infrastructure alongside the deployment of new vehicles.

The innovative technology these vehicles use has long range (300+ miles) and fast refuelling (three to five minutes) capability, and will support the Industrial Strategy Future of Mobility Grand Challenge to place the UK at the forefront of the design and manufacturing of zero emission vehicles.

The winning projects recommended for funding as part of the Hydrogen for Transport Programme Stage 2 are:

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The combined contribution of these projects will be to deploy five new hydrogen refuelling stations, 73 fuel cell electric vehicles and 33 fuel cell electric buses.

The winning projects are dispersed across the UK with activities in Northern Ireland (Belfast), Scotland (Aberdeen), Wales (Monmouthshire) and England (Crawley, St. Helens, Middlesbrough and Stockton on Tees).

Road to zero

The government is on a mission to put the UK at the forefront of the design and manufacturing of zero emission vehicles.

In its Road to Zero Strategy released last year, the government revealed its plans to ban new petrol and diesel cars and vans in favour of plug-in hybrid, electric and hydrogen fuel cell from 2040.

Speaking at the Smart Transport conference earlier this month, Jesse Norman MP said the government is investing nearly £1.5bn ($1.9bn) between 2015 and 2021 to support the growth of ultra-low emission vehicles - one of the most comprehensive programmes of support for ultra-low emission vehicles anywhere in the world.

Commenting on the Hydrogen for Transport Programme, he said, “The aim of the programme is to increase the take up of fuel cell electric vehicles, and to expand hydrogen refuelling infrastructure. It’s already helping to deliver hydrogen vehicles for the Metropolitan Police.”

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