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Evidence Base Utilised to Justify a Hydrogen Blend Gas Network Safety Case


Blending hydrogen with natural gas up to 20 % mol/mol has been identified as a key enabler of hydrogen deployment within the UK gas network. This work outlines the evidence base generated to form the basis of safety submitted to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) to justify a demonstration of hydrogen blending on a live public gas network within the UK, supplying a hydrogen blend to 668homes over the  course of 10 months. An evidence base to demonstrate that gas users are not prejudiced by the addition of hydrogen is required by the Gas Safety (Management) Regulations [1] to allow hydrogen distribution above the 0.1 mol% limit specified within the regulations. The technical evidence generated to support the safety case presented to the HSE concerned the implications of introducing a hydrogen blend on appliance operation, materials, gas characteristics and operational procedures. The outputs of the technical evidence workstreams provided input data to a Quantitative Risk Assessment (QRA) of the GB gas distribution network. The QRA was developed in support of the safety case to allow a causal understanding of public risk to be understood, where harm due to gas usage was defined as risk to life caused either by carbon monoxide poisoning or as a result of fires/explosions. Public records were used to calibrate and validate the base risk model, to understand the dynamics of public risk due to natural gas usage. The experimental and analytical results of the technical workstreams were then used to derive risk model inputs relating to a hydrogen blend. This allowed a quantified comparison of risk to be understood to demonstrate parity of safety between natural gas and a hydrogen blend. This demonstration of risk parity is a condition precedent of allowing the distribution and utilisation of hydrogen blends within the GB gas network.

Funding source: Acknowledgement should also be given to the project funder, The Office for Gas and Electricity Markets (OFGEM) who sanctioned funding for the project under the Network Innovation Competition.
Related subjects: Safety
Countries: United Kingdom

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