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Research Papers: Pipeline Systems

Operating Hydrogen Gas Transmission Pipelines at Pressures Above 21 MPa

[+] Author and Article Information
Elizabeth S. Drexler

National Institute of Standards and Technology,
Applied Chemicals and Materials Division,
325 Broadway m/s 647,
Boulder, CO 80305
e-mail: elizabeth.drexler@nist.gov

Robert L. Amaro

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
University of Alabama,
401 7th Avenue,
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487
e-mail: Robert.amaro67@gmail.com

Andrew J. Slifka

National Institute of Standards and Technology,
Applied Chemicals and Materials Division,
325 Broadway m/s 647,
Boulder, CO 80305
e-mail: andrew.slifka@nist.gov

Peter E. Bradley

National Institute of Standards and Technology,
Applied Chemicals and Materials Division,
325 Broadway m/s 647,
Boulder, CO 80305
e-mail: peter.bradley@nist.gov

Damian S. Lauria

National Institute of Standards and Technology,
Office of Information Systems Management,
325 Broadway m/s 187,
Boulder, CO 80305
e-mail: damian.lauria@nist.gov

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Pressure Vessel and Piping Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF PRESSURE VESSEL TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received June 11, 2018; final manuscript received October 2, 2018; published online November 12, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Steve J. Hensel. This material is declared a work of the U.S. Government and is not subject to copyright protection in the United States. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.

J. Pressure Vessel Technol 140(6), 061702 (Nov 12, 2018) (6 pages) Paper No: PVT-18-1115; doi: 10.1115/1.4041689 History: Received June 11, 2018; Revised October 02, 2018

The economical and efficient transportation of hydrogen gas is necessary for it to become a widespread source of energy. One way to improve the economics is to lower the cost of building hydrogen gas pipelines. The recent modification to the ASME B31.12 Code for Hydrogen Piping and Pipelines begins to lower the cost of building pipelines for hydrogen service by allowing the use of high-strength steel that will provide the same margin of safety with thinner pipe walls. Less steel directly impacts the cost of materials and welding. A means of improving efficiency would be to increase the hydrogen gas pressure to augment the volume of products transmitted through the pipeline. The recent B31.12 code modification characterized dozens of fatigue crack growth test results conducted in hydrogen gas pressurized up to 21 MPa with an upper boundary of fatigue crack growth rate (FCGR), defined as a function where all measured FCGRs fall below this boundary. In this study, different pipe geometries, strengths, and pressures with established design protocols were evaluated to determine if the code would require further modifications should linepipes be designed for higher hydrogen gas pressures, up to 34 MPa. It was shown through a numerical exercise that the code could be minimally modified and safety margins would be adequate for those pressures for steels up to and including API-5 L Grade X70.

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References

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Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Microstructure of the three base metals: (a) X52, (b) X70A, and (c) X70B

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

The ratio (R) of minimum to maximum hydrogen gas pressure with respect to stress intensity factor range (ΔK) for linepipes designed to the 2018 version of the code (SMYS = 483 MPa) with diameters of 508 mm or 610 mm and designed for different maximum pressures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

The ratio (R) of minimum to maximum hydrogen gas pressure with respect to stress intensity factor range (ΔK) for a linepipe designed to the 2014 code (SMYS = 359 MPa) and the 2018 version of the code (SMYS = 483 MPa) with a diameter of 324 mm and designed for a maximum pressure of 34 MPa. The vertical dotted lines show the critical range of ΔK to be avoided.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

The ratio (R) of minimum to maximum hydrogen gas pressure with respect to stress intensity factor range (ΔK) for two different maximum pressures in an X52 pipe with a diameter of 324 mm and designed for a maximum pressure of 6.9 MPa. The vertical dotted lines show the critical range of ΔK to be avoided.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Relationship among Pmax, ΔK, and R for a reasonable operating regime for hydrogen pipelines

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Effect of pressure on the FCGR at ΔK = 14 MPa m0.5 for the three steels at hydrogen gas pressures of 5.5 MPa and 34 MPa

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Fatigue crack growth data of Grade X70 steel tested in air and hydrogen gas pressures of 5.5 MPa and 34 MPa. The solid gold line represents the upper bound on which the ASME B31.12 (2018) code is based.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Fatigue crack growth data of Grade X52 steel tested in air, and hydrogen gas pressures of 5.5 MPa and 34 MPa. The solid gold line represents the upper bound on which the ASME B31.12 (2018) code is based.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

The ratio (R) of minimum to maximum hydrogen gas pressure with respect to stress intensity factor range (ΔK) for linepipes designed with a SMYS = 690 MPa with diameters of 508 mm or 610 mm and designed for a maximum pressure of 21 MPa or 34 MPa

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