On 45 October, the Nordic Hydrogen Valleys Conference will take place in Reykjavík, Iceland. By building on the five projects supported through the call “Nordic hydrogen valleys as energy hubs – by 2030 and 2040” within the Nordic Hydrogen Valleys as Energy Hubs Programme, the conference will connect researchers and stakeholders in the Nordics and beyond.

One of the projects that will be explored at the conference is Material and Structural Integrity Assessment for Safe Nordic Hydrogen Transportation Infrastructure (MatHias). Vigdis Olden, Senior Research Scientist at SINTEF Industry, Materials Integrity, and Welding group, is Project Lead of MatHias. She has previously attended international conferences on the topic of hydrogen-materials interaction, but this will be her first solely Nordic conference dedicated to addressing the broader energy perspective of hydrogen.

“I am excited to meet and get to know fellow Nordic scientists who are engaged in hydrogen-related research and discuss their projects. I hope and expect that this exchange of ideas will enhance all five projects. Also, I am eagerly anticipating the beauty of Iceland. I visited in 2007 and I am looking forward to returning!” says Vigdis.

Vigdis Olden

Safe hydrogen transport – a mutual Nordic interest

Vigdis explains how the MatHias project will support the green energy transition, by means of the Nordic Hydrogen Valleys Conference.

“In general, developing a safe hydrogen transport infrastructure is of mutual interest to all the Nordic countries. Pipelines provide the most feasible option for regional and inter-regional large-scale hydrogen transport, as well as storage of pressurized hydrogen gas. However, a key threat to the safety of hydrogen pipelines is hydrogen embrittlement, which is caused by the ingress of atomic hydrogen into the steel, making the pipelines prone to brittle fracture. The low temperatures in the Nordic region may further increase the embrittlement of the pipelines. Understanding the combined influence of low temperature and hydrogen on the mechanical properties and fracture resistance of pipeline steels remains a scientific challenge. This knowledge will contribute to the safe design and use of hydrogen transport pipelines, thereby aiding the green energy transition,” says Vigdis. “The MatHias project at the Nordic Hydrogen Valleys Conference is pleased to share information and discuss the materials integrity aspect of hydrogen pipeline transport, as well as the entire hydrogen value chain. Since hydrogen comes into contact with structural materials in other parts of the value chain, such as hydrogen production and end use, the conference can benefit from this perspective.”

Not only will the MatHias project be beneficial to conference – the conference will benefit the project and the green energy transition, too. Vigdis believes it is vital to bring researchers with different perspectives on hydrogen as an energy carrier together, in order for hydrogen to succeed as a major player in the green energy transition.

“Furthermore, in the Nordic countries, we share common traits such as a cold climate, untouched nature, and a scattered population. These factors must be taken into consideration when determining the way forward for hydrogen in the energy mix. I firmly believe that meeting and sharing information from the five projects part of the Nordic Hydrogen Valleys as Energy Hubs Programme is an important milestone on this path,” says Vigdis.

Regarding the programme, Vigdis anticipates it will continue to support projects that facilitate common Nordic Energy solutions. “As small countries, we stand to benefit collectively from such shared solutions in terms of efficiency, safety, and sustainability,” she says.

Sign up for the conference here

For more information, please contact Senior Adviser Lise Nielson or Adviser Ole Aune Ødegård.