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GNS Science research projects help secure energy future

New Zealand’s goal to be carbon-zero by 2050 is a step closer today, thanks to two major projects launched and led by GNS Science.

The Crown Research Institute is working with partners from around the world to develop cutting-edge technological solutions to our energy needs – both now and in the future.

A team led by Dr Isabelle Chambefort at GNS Science is ramping up its work in “next generation” geothermal energy, looking at how to tap deep, very high temperature resources.

“Our science will deliver new options to significantly reduce emissions – as well as providing vital regional perspective and opportunities for iwi and regional development,” GNS Science chief executive Ian Simpson says.

“Isabelle’s team will work on innovation to utilise deep superheated geothermal fluids which will help boost the availability of low emissions energy and the export of New Zealand’s low-carbon expertise – and meet the Carbon Zero 2050 goal.”

These deep energy sources could provide new options for the energy needs of emerging industries like the hydrogen economy.

GNS Science’s Prasanth Gupta and John Kennedy are leading research which will greatly increase the commercial viability of hydrogen as an energy carrier, by moving away from precious metals as catalysts by unlocking more plentiful and cost-effective alternatives.

As well as reducing barriers to adoption, the research will create new manufacturing techniques and export opportunities for New Zealand.

Both projects have received funding through the Endeavour Fund of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

“These two projects show that GNS’s excellent science will play a key role to meeting our future energy needs and will deliver enormous benefits for New Zealand,” Mr Simpson says.

“We’re excited to be working with numerous local and international collaborators to deliver science that’s useful, useable and used.

“We’re really grateful to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment for backing GNS Science to launch these two programmes, which we believe will be of huge benefit to New Zealand.”

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