Research

RP3.1-13: Feasibility of the use of gas phase inhibition of hydrogen embrittlement in gas transmission pipelines carrying hydrogen

Executive Summary

The Industry need is that gas transmission pipeline operators require knowledge about safe operating conditions for gas pipelines carrying hydrogen, in terms of the permissible safe operating pressure, and tolerable defect sizes. Otherwise, fractures are expected, with significant collateral damage.

This research will provide critical knowledge regarding the inhibition of hydrogen embrittlement (HE) by small amounts of added gases (O2, CH4, CO, CO2). If 100% inhibition of HE were practical, then the mechanical behaviour of the pipeline steel for a hydrogen carrying pipeline would be exactly the same as that of a gas transmission pipeline with no hydrogen and the operating characteristics would remain the same as at the present time, regardless of the hydrogen content of the gas inside the gas transmission pipeline. The use of this strategy requires in-depth understanding because thermodynamics indicates that the inhibition is a kinetic effect.

This research assesses the feasibility of the use of gas phase inhibition of environmental hydrogen embrittlement for use in gas transmission pipelines carrying hydrogen. The research proposes (i) to study the hydrogen flux entering gas transmission pipeline steels exposed to hydrogen and hydrogen methane mixtures in the presence of small amounts of added gases such as O2, CO, and CO2; and (ii) study the approach to equilibrium solubility of hydrogen in the gas transmission pipeline steels, in particular how quickly equilibrium is approached.

 

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Commencement / End Date February 2022 to March 2025
Outcomes / Impact

The proposed research evaluate the safety and feasibility of using added gases to totally inhibit the environment hydrogen embrittlement of gas transmission pipelines carrying hydrogen. Engineers within the gas transmission industry will use the research outputs for the evaluation of the safety and feasibility of using added gases to totally inhibit the hydrogen embrittlement of gas transmission pipelines carrying hydrogen.

 

Partners University of Queensland, Australian Gas Infrastructure Group, SEA Gas, Jemena, APA Group, Santos, SA Gov, Queensland Gov.
Research Contact

Dr Fari Mahdavi

Research Program Coordinator

fariba.mahdavi@futurefuelscrc.com