Bureau of Economic Geology

Large scale geological storage of hydrogen to support Net Zero

November 19, 2021 9:00 AM


Katriona Edlmann, Ph.D.
Chancellor’s Fellow in Energy
School of Geosciences
The University of Edinburgh


To meet the global commitments for net zero carbon emissions our energy mix must transition from fossil fuels. Hydrogen is gaining increasing recognition as a low carbon energy option to support this energy transition. Hydrogen is considered a low- carbon substitute for fossil fuels to decarbonise domestic and industrial heat, power generation and heavy-duty transport. It can also promote increased renewable energy uptake by acting as an energy store to balance supply and demand.

For hydrogen to be deployed at the scales required for net zero, we will need access to large-scale geological storage. Our initial studies show that the required storage capacity exists in depleted gas fields within the UK North Sea. This talk will present an overview of the most recent findings from the EPSRC funded HyStorPor project, working to establish the feasibility of storing hydrogen in underground porous reservoirs. The talk will cover the results of our research into the key biological and chemical reactions between the reservoir rocks, formation fluids and injected hydrogen that could compromise the storage complex; the key flow processes that influence hydrogen migration and trapping during injection and withdrawal and our findings from reservoir simulations to estimate what volumes of hydrogen can be stored and recovered from storage sites, with a particular focus on the role of the cushion gas.

Katriona Edlmann

University of Texas at Austin

University of Texas

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