Hydrogen transportation is a corner stone for setting up a hydrogen based economy. Using existing natural gas pipeline for hydrogen transportation could be a way to match hydrogen economy needs and today possibilities. This paper presents some results from a a study carried out by ALPHEA Hyrogene.
The use of hydrogen in the energy sector of the United States is projected to increase significantly in the future. This study reviews existing US hydrogen pipeline systems and identifies handling of issues unique to hydrogen with an eye to leveraging existing natural gas pipelines to transport hydrogen in the future.
Blending hydrogen into natural gas pipeline networks has also been proposed as a means of delivering pure hydrogen to markets, using separation and purification technologies downstream to extract hydrogen from the natural gas blend close to the point of end use. As a hydrogen delivery method, blending can defray the cost of building dedicated hydrogen pipelines or other costly delivery infrastructure during the early market development phase. This hydrogen delivery strategy also incurs additional costs, associated with blending and extraction, as well as modifications to existing pipeline integrity management systems, and these must be weighed against alternative means of bringing more sustainable and low-carbon energy to consumers.