Future HyWay_Ayr SHS

Click here for photos from Ayr State High School.
Click here for photos from Ignatius Park College.

Students from North Queensland are discovering the power of hydrogen at a unique workshop delivered by the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA), the education arm of the Queensland Resources Council (QRC).

Thanks to support from the Australian Gas Industry Trust (AGIT), about 30 students from Ayr State High School and Ignatius Park College are completing exciting, technology-driven activities that explore green hydrogen production, hydrogen fuel cells, and hydrogen-powered vehicles.

QRC Director of Skills, Education and Diversity, Ms Katrina-Lee Jones said this innovative education experience highlights the role that hydrogen will play in helping the world reach net zero emissions.

“To kick off the full-day workshop, students dove into data analysis and reaction rates, looking at the ratio and volume of hydrogen and oxygen produced when an electrolyser is used with water,” Ms Jones explained.

“Not only is this an interactive and exciting way to learn about green hydrogen production, but it lets the students apply their fundamental chemistry and mathematic skills to an industrial scenario.”

Executive Officer at AGIT, Dr Jen Thompson said the second part of the workshop saw students study fuel cell theory, and in teams, use a fuel cell and motor to measure the hydrogen consumption rate for powering the motor.

“In the very near future, these students will likely be driving hydrogen-powered vehicles, so this element of the workshop is a fantastic opportunity for them to learn about clean fuels and breakthrough technology,” Ms Thompson said.

“The day will wrap up with an exciting competition where students will use teamwork, design thinking, and creativity to construct and race their very own model hydrogen-powered vehicles that include an all-in-one electrolyser and fuel cell system.”

Ignatius Park College Principal, Mr Shaun Clarke said the school is very excited to be hosting the QMEA workshop today.

“In addition to the dynamic, hands-on learning activities, our students are working alongside industry representatives who are guiding them through the workshop tasks and offering firsthand advice on possible career pathways,” Mr Clarke said.

“Our school values its partnership with the QMEA, and these experiences are an invaluable opportunity for the students to enjoy exciting challenges that complement the classroom curriculum.”

As Australia’s largest and most successful industry-led education and schools training initiative, the QMEA seeks to broaden student and teacher knowledge of career opportunities in resources.

The academy encourages a talent pipeline of employees into vocational and professional careers, with a focus on female and Indigenous participation. The QMEA currently engages with 90 schools and is a partnership between the QRC and the Queensland Government under its Gateway to Industry Schools program.

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