CGG, University of Edinburgh commence ‘game-changing’ hydrogen storage research

Sept. 16, 2022
'Industry-leading' project will undertake research into the subsurface storage of hydrogen in depleted gas fields.

Offshore staff

PARIS, France – CGG and the University of Edinburgh have commenced an “industry-leading” project to undertake research into the subsurface storage of hydrogen in depleted gas fields.

Hydrogen can be generated from electrolysis using renewable energy sources (‘green hydrogen’) and can help to alleviate the intermittent nature of renewable energy such as solar and wind.

Alternatively, ‘blue’ hydrogen can be generated from gas (methane). CGG says that there is currently considerable interest in replacing traditional fossil fuels, like natural gas, with hydrogen in many industries, including energy and manufacturing and for domestic heating.

However, hydrogen has a very low energy density, meaning huge volumes are required to replace methane, and making surface storage impractical. Subsurface hydrogen storage in depleted gas fields may offer a critical solution.

To that end, CGG and the GeoEnergy research group at the University of Edinburgh will model the heterogeneity of subsurface geological reservoirs to ascertain the most favorable potential sites for hydrogen storage and whether alternative cushion gases, such as CO2, can be used to reduce the operational storage and recovery costs of hydrogen.

CGG says that the value of this project lies in its aim to demonstrate the feasibility and operational characteristics of hydrogen storage in depleted gas fields. This could make low-carbon hydrogen energy storage feasible on a terawatt-hour scale, allowing intermittent renewable electricity to become a round-the-clock resource through ‘green’ hydrogen generation and use. CGG says that the project results will be vital for the energy industry and regulators, enabling them to improve decisions on efficient hydrogen storage site selection and optimization strategies.


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