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Compatibility and Suitability of Existing Steel Pipelines for Transport of Hydrogen and Hydrogen-natural Gas Blends


Hydrogen is being considered as a pathway to decarbonize large energy systems and for utility-scale energy storage. As these applications grow, transportation infrastructure that can accommodate large quantities of hydrogen will be needed. Many millions of tons of hydrogen are already consumed annually, some of which is transported in dedicated hydrogen pipelines. The materials and operation of these hydrogen pipeline systems, however, are managed with more constraints than a conventional natural gas pipeline. Transitional strategies for deep decarbonization of energy systems include blending hydrogen into existing natural gas systems, where the materials and operations may not have the same controls. This study explores the hydrogen compatibility of existing pipeline steels and the suitability of these steels in hydrogen pipeline systems. Representative fracture and fatigue properties of pipeline grade steels in gaseous hydrogen are summarized from the literature. These properties are then considered in idealized design life calculations to inform materials performance for a typical gas pipeline.

Related subjects: Safety

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Compatibility and suitability of existing steel pipelines for transport of hydrogen and hydrogen-natural gas blends

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