Pure hydrogen instead of natural gas, is goodbye time approaching?
(Sustainabilityenvironment.com) – “We set a world record in hydrogen combustion with gas microturbines. No one had ever been able to reach this level“. Professor Mohsen Assadi, from the University of Stavinger in Norway, does not hide the satisfaction of announcing the result of his team. The research team, led by Assadi himself, has succeeded in an extraordinary feat: it has powered a gas microturbine only with pure hydrogen.
The system is part of the university’s small cogeneration plant that daily produces electricity and heat thanks to methane. Also providing hot water to some buildings. Scientists wanted to progressively move the power source from natural gas to hydrogen gas to achieve a completely emission-free energy supply. A milestone crossed in mid-May when the microturbine started working 100 % with hydrogen.
Obviously, the final product will undergo some changes, as explained by Professor Assadi. “The operating efficiency of the gas turbine with hydrogen will be slightly lower. However, the great advantage remains that you can use the existing infrastructure. Moreover, there are no CO2 emissions associated with this energy supply”.
But what are the uses of hydrogen? The research focused on the development of the combustion chamber in collaboration with colleagues of the German research center DLR. But the work necessarily also concerned the adaptation of the fuel supply and distribution system. “Some effort is needed to ensure that the existing gas infrastructure can handle hydrogen instead of natural gas […] That’s what we’ve focused on,” says Assadi.