Bosch unveils hydrogen hob with invisible flames that will be installed in 300 homes at H100 Fife project




German manufacturer Bosch has unveiled the 100% hydrogen hob that will be installed in 300 homes at the H100 Fife project in the town of Buckhaven, Scotland, the UK’s only trial of H2 for heating and cooking in the home.


In daylight, hydrogen burns with an invisible colourless flame, so an additive called sodium carbonate has been used in previously unveiled H2 stoves to create a visible orange flame (see image below).

But there will be no additives in the hydrogen supplied to homes in Buckhaven, so the flame on the Bosch hob will be invisible (unless used in darkness, when a very pale blue flame will be visible).


So as a safety measure, the knobs used to turn on each burner will light up when a flame is present.


While burning hydrogen in air does not produce carbon dioxide, it does create some nitrous oxide, a greenhouse gas that is 280 times more potent than CO2 over a 20-year period. Other nitrogen oxides (NOx) are also produced that are harmful to human health, particularly people with asthma or other breathing problems.


A hydrogen cooker with orange flames demonstrated at a hydrogen show home in Gateshead, northeast England, in 2021. The orange colour comes from a sodium carbonate additive. Photo: Northern Gas Networks

Even SGN, the gas distributor leading the H100 Fife trial, is wary of NOx emissions, writing on its website: “We’re all increasingly concerned about breathing in gases like nitrogen oxides (NOx) which can be harmful to our health.”


After explaining that hydrogen boilers developed by leading manufacturers show less than half the NOx levels of natural-gas boilers, SGN cannot make any reassuring comments about NOx emissions from stove tops.


“More work is planned to assess NOx for other hydrogen appliances, and we’ll continue to monitor the outcome,” it writes.

SGN is planning for H100 Fife to go live in the summer of 2025, using green hydrogen produced from local wind power.


Two other mooted UK hydrogen home heating trials — in Whitby and Redcar — were scrapped after local opposition.


Bosch unveiled the new hob at the EuroCucina trade show in Milan earlier this week.


Source: HydrogenInsight

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