Removing the technical barriers to use of hydrogen in natural gas networks and for (natural) gas end users.

October 2020
– November 2021

Hydrogen has now become a major pillar of the European roadmap to carbon neutrality. Opportunities exist to blend hydrogen into the existing natural gas network, and also to repurpose the network for dedicated hydrogen use. Technical barriers remain, and these are perceived differently across European transmission and distribution network. Additionally, a full impact assessment on the wide range of end users (domestic, commercial and industrial appliances, mobility, power generation, etc) still needs further work. In particular these all need to be addressed to develop the European standards that are necessary for the implementation of hydrogen across Europe.

Therefore, the European Commission has funded, via CEN a project aiming at “Removing the technical barriers to use of hydrogen in natural gas networks and for (natural) gas end users”. GERG are delivering this project on behalf of CEN and a new Working Group has been created in CEN/TC234 to oversee the work.

The objective of this project is to review the current scientific and technical framework concerning the use of hydrogen, and drawing from this review a gap analysis which can then be translated into a set of pre-normative research (PNR) requirements. This work will then contribute to the process of standardisation for the introduction of hydrogen into the gas networks and for end users.

The project is divided into 9 priorities being delivered in parallel

  • WP1: Safety
  • WP2: Gas Quality
  • WP3: Underground Storage
  • WP4: Power generation and engines
  • WP5: Industry
  • WP6: Steel pipes
  • WP7: Network Equipment
  • WP8: End use appliances
  • WP9: Gas quality for industrial uses

Each WP will gather and assess the status of knowledge by collating and reviewing project reports, papers, internal documents etc. This process is generating a huge database: currently more than 1000 references. From this knowledge survey and assessment, a gap-analysis will be constructed to identify areas where knowledge is sufficient and where there are gaps for specific H2 concentrations.

The project finished in November 2021, and received funding of up to €1.1M from the European Commission via CEN (specific agreement N° CEN/2019/ENER/C2/452-2019/SI2.831737)

Ultimately the project developed plans for PNR activities focusing on lowering barriers to standardization. All the final reports as well as a summary report are available now among GERG members. Furthermore, a list of prioritised PNR actions was produced in order to use it for future projects creation.