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    Italian Grid Operator Steps up Hydrogen R&D


Snam is looking at ways of introducing the gas into industrial applications.

by: William Powell

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Italian Grid Operator Steps up Hydrogen R&D

Italian pipeline operator Snam has agreed to collaborate in the hydrogen sector with certification services firm Rina, it said April 8. It said the gas has "significant potential" in the fight against climate change and industrial decarbonisation.

The two companies have formed a joint working group to study and test the compatibility of industrial burners and other existing infrastructure already in operation with hydrogen. The group will also begin experiments, analysis and technology scouting in various areas involving hydrogen including production, storage and distribution.

Snam CEO Marco Alvera said: "The use of green hydrogen in existing infrastructure will play a key role in enabling the energy transition and achieving climate objectives, whilst also creating new opportunities for economic development, which are now more important than ever. Italy and its companies have the opportunity to pioneer this approach at an international level."

Rina CEO Ugo Salerno said: "Hydrogen is currently one of the best options for reducing carbon dioxide emissions. We are delighted to contribute our research and certification skills on hydrogen-compatible materials and our expertise in the field of analysis, studies and tests for storage to this partnership."

Green hydrogen may be generated by water electrolysis and can flow through the existing pipeline network. Last year, Snam became the first European company to replace a tenth of the methane in a grid with hydrogen.

Hydrogen has a lower calorific value than methane. According to a report commissioned by Snam, hydrogen could cover almost a quarter (23%) of national energy demand by 2050 under a deep decarbonisation scenario.