Nanocatalyst improved electrolysers



In 2019, the UK passed legislation requiring it to become a 'net zero' emitter of CO2 by 2050\. Analysis by BEIS and CCC shows the energy system will require significant amounts of low-carbon hydrogen (BEIS: 150-450TWh by 2050 and CCC 2020 report: "By 2050, a new low carbon industry is needed, with UK hydrogen production capacity of comparable size to the UK's current fleet of gas- fired power stations"). Oxford nanoSystems Ltd (OnS) believes it can make an important contribution towards enabling the green hydrogen economy.

OnS is a high-tech start-up that spent the past 6 years developing nanoFLUX, a nano-coating which dramatically improves the efficiency of two-phase systems. Our goal is to enable the production of cheaper, and more efficient products which consume less energy, limit environmental impact and reduce costs for consumers.

We acknowledge the UK's drive to push the new climate goals as reaffirmed by the Katowice Climate Conference 2018\. To reach those, innovative cutting-edge approaches need to be found, looking for future applications we acknowledge the UK's drive for sustainable energy. There is a growing demand for electrolysers that split water molecules and give pure hydrogen and oxygen for an electrical input. This need will increase because excess electrical energy from wind/solar can be stored in the form of hydrogen for future energy use. At the same time, it contributes to "Net Zero".

In this project, Oxford nanoSystems will be aiming to improve alkaline water electrolysis (AWE), because it is the most developed to date from the existing electrolyser methods and we believe our technology is able to substantially improve the efficiency of the cathode and therefore the generation of hydrogen. The physical properties required to improve the efficiency of these electrolysers resemble those seen in improving heat exchangers through our coating technology. In this project we will use an augmented nanoFLUX coating to enhance the surface area of the cathode and reduce the overpotential through enhanced bubble nucleation and release. By doing this we will significantly increase the catalytic sites and efficiency will be greatly enhanced. No comparable technology on the market can offer a low cost, easily-applicable solution like our coatings.

OnS has years of experience and its team of highly specialized experts in engineering and chemists have already worked on many successful IUK and BEIS projects.

Lead Participant

Project Cost

Grant Offer

OXFORD NANOSYSTEMS LTD £251,851 £ 176,296




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