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Risk Assessment of the Large-Scale Hydrogen Storage in Salt Caverns


Salt caverns are accepted as an ideal solution for high-pressure hydrogen storage. As well as considering the numerous benefits of the realization of underground hydrogen storage (UHS), such as high energy densities, low leakage rates and big storage volumes, risk analysis of UHS is a required step for assessing the suitability of this technology. In this work, a preliminary quantitative risk assessment (QRA) was performed by starting from the worst-case scenario: rupture at the ground of the riser pipe from the salt cavern to the ground. The influence of hydrogen contamination by bacterial metabolism was studied, considering the composition of the gas contained in the salt caverns as time variable. A bow-tie analysis was used to highlight all the possible causes (basic events) as well as the outcomes (jet fire, unconfined vapor cloud explosion (UVCE), toxic chemical release), and then, consequence and risk analyses were performed. The results showed that a UVCE is the most frequent outcome, but its effect zone decreases with time due to the hydrogen contamination and the higher contents of methane and hydrogen sulfide.

Countries: Italy

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