The Delgaz Grid company takes another important step towards the implementation of 20HyGrid, the first project in Romania that aims to test the sustainable heating of homes based on a mixture of natural gas (80%) and hydrogen (20%).
A team of company specialists participated last week in a training program in Germany, at DVGW/EBI (Der Deutsche Verein des Gas und Wasserfaches/EBI Engler Bunte Institute), a prestigious technical-scientific institution with 164 years of experience in the field of gas and water technologies. This institution operates within the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology.
The training of the team consisted of two parts, one theoretical and one practical. The theoretical training focused on the principles of combustion of natural gas mixtures and 20% hydrogen by volume.
The practical training had two stages, Delgaz Grid specialists being first trained how to work on site and what to pay attention to, from the working environment, safety conditions, combustion installations, measurements made with specific equipment, to the registration and interpretation of results. This part was combined with the testing of natural gas appliances by the instructors.
In the second part, Delgaz Grid specialists tested natural gas mixtures with different additions of hydrogen on different combustion systems: thermal power plants, convectors, stoves, burners from heating and cooking stoves. For example, a terracotta stove burner brought from Romania, over 40 years old, was tested, which worked perfectly with a mixture of natural gas and hydrogen even at a concentration of 40% (hydrogen volume in natural gas), which is far above the objectives pursued by the company’s project in Romania (20HyGrid), namely the use of a mixture of natural gas and 20% hydrogen volume.
Following the training, participants will obtain a certification from the DVGW/EBI Research Center attesting to the fact that they have acquired the skills and abilities to carry out tests under safe conditions for various types of natural gas appliances, with natural gas mixtures and hydrogen.
“We are one step closer to implementing our pilot project. It was a busy week, where the DVGW team shared with us specific technical information and best practices. We are confident that the use of the mixture of natural gas with 20% hydrogen volume in the existing appliances in Romania is possible without fundamental changes to the distribution system. We are grateful to the team of professionals from DVGW/EBI,” said Dr. Cristian Călin, 20HyGrid project coordinator.
Once this certification is obtained, the team of specialists formed by Dr. Cristian Călin, Viorel Oprea, Mihnea Bloj, Ioana Halmi and Bogdan Sebeni is ready to start the tests in Romania. In the first stage, which will start in April, the company will carry out checks in its own training ground in Mediaș, where the tightness of the various components of the network, combustion and other parameters will be tested for different types of appliances for the use of natural gas, to different manufacturers. At the same time, the behavior of steel and polyethylene network sections will be analyzed with the mixture of natural gas and 20% hydrogen by volume.
In November last year, Delgaz Grid launched a pilot project to test the compatibility and operation of utility facilities and distribution system components with a mixture of natural gas and hydrogen.
The project runs from November 2022 to October 2024 and aims to analyze and demonstrate that, from a technical point of view, it is technically possible and safe to add 20% hydrogen by volume to distribution networks and facilities using existing natural gas in Romania.
Consumer utility installations (pipes, utility devices, etc.) and distribution system components (pipes, connections, fittings, fittings, regulators, meters, etc.) will not be modified for this process.
The results of the 20HyGrid project will serve as a good practice model for future projects and for the use of hydrogen in different areas (including heating, domestic hot water and food).