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Vallourec revolutionizes hydrogen storage with delphy, its large-scale vertical solution

Hydrogen is emerging as a major solution for decarbonizing a number of industrial processes and transport. However, its accessibility at an affordable cost remains a crucial challenge.
12/05/2023
Hydrogen

Hydrogen is emerging as a major solution for decarbonizing a number of industrial processes and transport. However, its accessibility at an affordable cost remains a crucial challenge. But the unique physical properties of this gas make the task a complex one. To meet some of these challenges, Vallourec has developed a unique hydrogen storage solution, presented this Monday (December 4, 2023) at its Aulnoye-Aymeries plant in northern France, in the form of a vertical compressed hydrogen gas storage demonstrator.

 

This modular system, with its small footprint, makes it easy to integrate into demanding industrial environments, and offers a secure solution for large-scale hydrogen storage.

 

hydrogen storage

We are here to create the conditions for the success of the hydrogen sector. The emerging hydrogen market offers excellent growth prospects. It demonstrates the value of our technologies to the new energy sectors and confirms the Group's ambition to be a key player in the energy transition and low-carbon economy within the 2050 timeframe.

Philippe Guillemot
Vallourec Group Chairman and CEO

Meet storage needs up to 100 tonnes

The installation – the first of its kind in the world – is based on tubes and connections with extensively proven sealing technology and corrosion resistance. It demonstrates the validity of Vallourec’s innovative concept, establishes Vallourec as a key player in the hydrogen value chain and is an enabler for global decarbonisation.

 

Our vertical hydrogen storage solution marks an important milestone for Vallourec. This project offers, reliable, modular, and competitive large scale storage capacity. Vallourec offers a unique value proposition for the development of the hydrogen economy.

Ulrika Wising
SVP Energy Transition and member of Vallourec's Executive Committee

Our solution is an underground system, capable of storing up to 100 tonnes of hydrogen gas under maximum safety conditions. The system is suitable for green hydrogen producers, users for industrial applications and heavy mobility.

 

Our vertical storage system is made up of steel tubes connected to each other, considerably reducing the footprint. Our solution, underground and vertical, minimizes risks, guaranteeing optimal safety performance, perfectly meeting the constraints of customers with limited space.

Vincent Designolle
Hydrogen Director, Vallourec

 

delphy Hydrogen Storage: Revolutionizing hydrogen storage

 

To support the commercial development of this storage solution, Vallourec is launching it under a new brand name “delphy”.

This hydrogen storage technology is part of the wider Vallourec® New Energies offering, designed to support the energy transition, including geothermal, carbon sequestration, solar and biomass segments. New Energies’ offerings could contribute between 10% and 15% of Vallourec’s EBITDA by 2030.

 

The delphy solution is fully modular, giving customers the freedom to deploy the required number of tubes according to their specific needs. Each tube can hold between 25 and 30 kg of hydrogen gas, compressed to 280 bar (equivalent to 200/250 kg per column).

Explore how delphy's hydrogen storage solution works

 

Vallourec chose its historic Aulnoye-Aymeries site – home to its European industrial base and worldwide Research & Development centre, ONE R&D – to make this breakthrough a reality. Initial in-depth work, including material selection, non-destructive testing (NDT), simulation and the choice of VAM® 21 to withstand such high hydrogen pressures, led to last year’s launch of the project.

Find out how delphy’s hydrogen storage solution was developed

Follow step-by-step the building of the delphy demonstrator

Growth prospects in the global hydrogen sector are substantial, with a projected installed capacity of 61 million tonnes by 2030, providing Vallourec with an estimated revenue of several tens of millions of euros per storage unit.