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Sustainable Gas Institute

Since 2014, the Sustainable Gas Institute, based at Imperial College, has provided thought leadership and authoritative interdisciplinary evidence and analysis on the role of natural gas, hydrogen and biogas/biomethane in future low carbon energy systems.

About Us

Researchers at the Institute manage, lead and deliver world-class research with our global partners across the spectrum of science, engineering, economics and business to support policymakers and industry in their decision-making. The institute is led by Dr Adam Hawkes, and its governance board is chaired by Prof Nigel Brandon.


Our aims are to:

  • Examine the environmental, economic and technological role of gas in the global energy landscape;
  • Define the technologies and develop energy systems models that could explore the role of gas and other energy sources;
  • Consider how and where gas can help address the global challenge climate change.


The Institute focuses on natural gas, hydrogen and biogas/biomethane energy vectors, covering research in production processes, processing and conversion, transport and related infrastructure, and a complete range of end-use technologies.

This technical knowledge underpins further analysis of enabling factors such as economics, policy, regulatory and market mechanisms in low carbon futures.

Research Themes

The Institute has six research themes:

1. Methane research
Understand methane emissions and their mitigation in energy supply chains. This includes data, analysis, technology, techniques, policy and regulation. Reliably detecting, quantifying, and reducing methane emissions is one of the key issues facing the oil and gas industry today, and the Sustainable Gas Institute is at the forefront of knowledge in this area.

2. Evidence-base reviews
Deliver evidence based white papers that inform the debate around the role of natural gas. 

The Institute has published four white papers:

-          Methane & CO2 emissions from the natural gas supply chain (September 2015)
-          Can technology help to unlock ‘unburnable carbon’? (May 2016)
-          A greener gas grid: what are the options? (July 2017)
-          Can natural reduce emissions in transport? Heavy vehicles and goods (Feb 2019)

3. Gas technology briefings
Focus on the translation of our research into industry and policy impact in high-profile peer-reviewed journals.

4. Modelling gas futures
Develop a unique energy systems simulation modelling tool (MUSE) to analyse the energy system, and the role of technologies within it.This is complemented by spatially-resolved energy infrastructure optimisation tools at local/urban levels to provide granular insights.

5. Hydrogen research
Explore possible future roles of hydrogen in heating, transport, power generation and industry.

6. Member specific research
The institute recently works with a range of industry and government partners to deliver tailored insights on future energy systems.

Contact us

Visit our website: 
Twitter: @SGI_London