Following the successful open-call Hydrogen Valleys as Energy Hubs – by 2030 and 2040, Nordic Energy Research is pleased to announce that five projects have officially been recommended for funding.

The projects recommended for funding are as follows:

Nordic Hydrogen Hubs – Roadmaps towards 2030 and 2040 (NordicH2ubs)

Project Partners: SINTEF AS, SINTEF Energy, SINTEF Ocean, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Technical Research Centre of Finland, Chalmers University of Technology, Aalborg University, DBI – The Danish Institute of Fire and Security Technology, New Energy Island, Greenstat ASA, Norwegian hydrogen, Everfuel, Alleima, Kemira, Aalborg forsyning, Þrymur.

About the project:

The project links different research perspectives and cover multiple industry sectors. Five case studies will improve our understanding on how to ensure successful cross-sectorial linkage between Nordic hydrogen hubs across land and sea towards 2030 and 2040. This includes studies on safety and standardization related to hydrogen storage in ports and quality assurance for hydrogen used in transportation. On a country level, socio-economic barriers related to cross-sectorial collaboration, including competence needs in the Nordics and regulations that hinder Nordic hydrogen uptake will be identified. On the Nordic level, a NordicH2ubs modelling toolbox will be developed based on three existing open-source models which will be used to study how Nordic hydrogen value chains interacts with the wider energy system, including long-term strategic investments and short-term operations between all relevant energy carriers.

Rally to the Valley: Establishing Hydrogen Value Chains for the Nordics (Nord_H2ub)

Project Partners: Copenhagen Business School, Technical University of Denmark, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NHH Norwegian School of Economics, Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology, Rønne Havn A/S, H2Carrier AS, St1 Norge AS, St1 Oy.

About the project:

This project has a particular focus on the role of the maritime sector. The project delivers insights into the characteristics of optimal production of hydrogen, ammonia, and other electrofuels, including cost and cost structures for production, storage, and transportation. It will also provide knowledge about demand side characteristics, such as volumes, locational distribution, and emissions. To create knowledge on specific operational details and requirements, energy hub modelling helps to obtain specifics on port operations, energy hub structure, and logistics needs. A project specific energy system model will allow for determining infrastructure needs including transport and storage at aggregated regional levels and more detailed locations. The project also assesses markets and regulatory challenges including technological, safety, and socio-economic barriers to a hydrogen economy.

Hydrogen, Ammonia, and Methanol in Hydrogen Hubs in the Nordic Region (H2AMN)

Project Partners: Luleå University of Technology, University of Iceland, IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute, Port of Gothenburg, Blámi, Statkraft, Landsvirkjun, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Luleå Energy, Piteå Hamn, SSAB.

About the project:

This project addresses how ports, surrounding areas and actors will be able to scale up hydrogen-based fuels in the Nordic region and transition to become fossil-free energy hubs. The overall aim of this project is to analyse the potential for hydrogen-based fuel pathways (focusing on hydrogen, ammonia, and electro-methanol) in the Nordic region based on three case studies of energy hubs, centred around ports, in various Nordic location, looking at marine applications new opportunities for local energy and steel companies. Storage options, such as rock caverns, will be studied and supported by policy and market assessment, as well as scenario and energy systems modelling to clarify the impact for realization of hydrogen-based hubs in the selected cases and on a Nordic level.

Hydrogen Safety and Improved Permit Processes (H2SIPP)

Project Partners: Luleå University of Technology, Lund University, Aalto University, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, The Swedish Gas Association Zelk, Skoogs, Bodens Utveckling AB, Gällivare näringsliv, SSAB, Hydri, Gen-H Oy, Nordion, AFRY.

About the project:

The overall goal with this project is to develop a strategy to delimit barriers for the implementation of hydrogen in the Nordic countries, from a permit, safety, and social acceptance perspective. The focus is on the permitting process in general and specifically for safety distance determination, which are considered one of the major challenges for a broad implementation of hydrogen technologies. Work on material safety and reliability analysis will be supported by a tailormade plan for non-destructive testing, developed and validated in pipeline prototypes, made of materials and dimensions representative of real conditions. All work will be the base to present a plan for the Nordics from the safety and permits perspective, to keep the lead and gain the advantages many years ahead.

Material and Structural Integrity Assessment for Safe Nordic Hydrogen Transportation Infrastructure (MatHias)

Project Partners: SINTEF, Technical Research Centre of Finland, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, University of Oulu, Uppsala University, Equinor, SSAB Europe Oy, Gasgrid Finland, Nordion Energi.        

About the project:

Developing a safe hydrogen transport infrastructure is of mutual interest for the Nordic countries. Pipelines provide the option for regional and inter-regional large-scale transport and storage of pressurized hydrogen gas. A key threat to the safety of hydrogen pipelines is embrittlement, caused by hydrogen ingress into the steel making the pipelines prone to brittle fracture. Low (freezing) temperatures that prevail in the Nordic region may further increase the embrittlement. The project will 1) Identify, and bench mark a matrix of vintage and modern pipeline steels, 2) characterize the steels by applying state-of-the-art test methods in relevant environmental conditions, 3) build a material database with mechanical properties and microstructural features as a function of hydrogen and temperature and finally 4) develop a predictive structural integrity assessment tool that will assist pipeline operators to select appropriate steels, assess lifetime and schedule maintenance for Nordic hydrogen pipelines. A joint review of the project work will be performed by all participants, and a common testing and modelling protocol for Nordic hydrogen pipelines will be drafted.