Three interdisciplinary research programs
The research program will be supported by education, outreach, and commercialisation activities to deliver innovation for industry, and build new technical and managerial capacity in the energy industry.
Research Program 1: Future Fuel Technologies, Systems and Markets
Program 1 focuses on the understanding of the technical, commercial and market barriers to, and opportunities for, the use of future fuels.
Research will generate tools to model production and delivery systems for future fuels like hydrogen, biogas, methanol and ammonia. The tools will incorporate current plans for Australia’s energy market, consistent with abatement targets, to generate scenarios to meet its commitments at the lowest total cost to consumers.
Techno-economic models of fuel production processes and supply chains will be developed to identify major technical or cost hurdles to the commercial uptake of low carbon fuels. Transformational technology will then be developed to solve these issues. Policy reforms necessary to enable implementation will be identified and presented to government.
The CRC will leverage demonstration projects planned by industry participants, including pilots demonstrating the injection of hydrogen into gas networks and ‘Power to Gas’ technology that utilises surplus renewable electricity. Research is required to develop, prove and exploit these technologies for Australian conditions.
Research will characterise the properties of low carbon fuels and determine how they will impact residential, commercial and industrial customers, and solutions will be developed to address these impacts.
Research Program 2: Social Acceptance, Public Safety & Security of Supply
Program 2 studies the social and policy context, including public acceptance and safety, for technology and infrastructure associated with future fuels.
Early and effective engagement with communities builds public understanding and acceptance of major infrastructure investments. Research will assist industry to understand and effectively address community-based issues and develop appropriate engagement solutions.
This program will produce outputs that will sustain the world’s best practice safety and reliability performance of the Australian gas sector as it decarbonises. Research will focus on technical, social and organisational factors that support excellence in learning and decision-making.
Ensuring public safety requires not just excellence in the energy industry but excellent oversight from the regulatory system. Therefore, research will explore regulatory best practice in other jurisdictions and adapt these to the Australian environment.
Research Program 3: Network Lifecycle Management
Using outputs of Programs 1 and 2 as well as known technical issues, Program 3 will design new cost effective integrity systems to enhance operations of the infrastructure carrying both existing and future fuels. It will exploit developments in allied disciplines, such as big data integration, new materials, and additive manufacturing to enhance current asset management practices.
Vital components of the energy transfer infrastructure will be studied from concept to end of life. Research will address novel materials, design, installation, operations and maintenance, and re-purposing or decommissioning requirements. Solutions will be provided to asset owners on the suitability of metallic and polymer pipe materials for the transport and storage of existing and new fluids.