The voestalpine Group has a wide range of expertise in all aspects of hydrogen production, transport, and storage. The group is applying its experience to support the use of the green energy carrier in the hydrogen industry.
Producing, transporting, and storing hydrogen are not only the basic prerequisites for using this green energy carrier. They also present new challenges for the hydrogen industry. We are a step ahead here with our in-depth knowledge and experience in the industrial handling of this medium.
Ready for hydrogen
Switching over to hydrogen as an energy carrier poses material and process technology challenges. Many voestalpine companies are already making their knowledge and experience in the hydrogen sector available to customers. Their know-how in the field of sour-gas resistant components, for instance, is paying off. voestalpine is making real contributions on behalf of customers, especially in the areas of seamless pipes, heavy plates for transport and storage solutions, and welding consumables.
The experience of voestalpine companies in transporting and storing hydrogen is being applied in areas such as:
- Heavy plates for pressure pipelines
- Pressurized tank solutions for fuel cell vehicles
- Welding consumables for joints influenced by compressed hydrogen
Ready for high pressure
"Pipe connections subject to particularly harsh conditions, for instance a pipeline for pressurized hydrogen that runs across the Mediterranean—that would be our specialty. We are familiar with the challenges of extreme conditions such as those encountered in deep-sea pipelines due to our business with sour-gas resistant product solutions and the new requirements for materials used to transport hydrogen."
Claudius S., Head of Quality Control for heavy plates, feels that the strength of voestalpine Grobblech GmbH in the hydrogen business especially lies in the unusual requirements. The Linz-based company can support customers in their strategic considerations of using newly laid pipelines to also transport hydrogen in a few years or decades. It also offers solutions for large-scale storage facilities and process plants in the low to medium pressure range and has already implemented them in initial projects.
Ready for seamless tubes
It is well known that steel and hydrogen hardly get along with each other, because hydrogen likes to attack the weak points in steel tubes. The specialists at voestalpine Tubulars have developed a number of solutions that allow them to peacefully coexist. They are transferring their know-how from many years of development work for the oil and gas industry to the hydrogen industry.
"Seamless pipes from voestalpine Tubulars can sufficiently withstand hydrogen thanks to our manufacturing expertise, as initial test applications at a European customer over several weeks have shown."
Jürgen K., Head of R&D, is certain that the European network of natural gas pipelines could also be used for hydrogen supply: “Our production facilities in Kindberg are ideally prepared for further expansion. The first pipes delivered have already withstood storage pressures of 200 bar.” And he sees more market potential for the voestalpine company in the hydrogen era, for instance a sustainable solution for stationary and mobile storage systems.
Ready for secure connections
A pressure vessel is only as good as its weld seams. That is why the researchers at voestalpine Böhler Welding GmbH are looking into the behavior of welding consumables under pressurized hydrogen conditions. “We are using constant load tests to investigate selected welding consumables’ propensity for hydrogen embrittlement at the Montanuniversität Leoben,” says Thomas W., Vice President Global R&D Joining. Thanks to their many years of experience, voestalpine welding specialists also offer reliable solutions for secure welded joints when transporting and storing hydrogen.