Control and quick-acting shut-off valves for hydrogen applications
Hydrogen – the energy carrier of the future
Whether in the steel industry, in mobility or in stationary and portable areas: Due to the decarbonisation of the energy industry, the energy carrier hydrogen is increasingly coming into focus. There is a reason for this: molecular hydrogen (H2) can only be produced from renewable sources, for example from the electrolysis of water with electricity from wind, sun, biomass or from the steam reforming of biogas. But in order to use hydrogen safely, the materials used must meet high, special requirements and be carefully selected. This is a challenge that PRUSS has been successfully meeting for decades – with the development of valves specifically for the use of hydrogen. To be more precise: with quick-acting shut-off valves, high-precision control valves, the corresponding pneumatic/hydraulic actuators and much more.
The challenge of hydrogen control valves
A particular risk for highly stressed pressure-bearing components is so-called “hydrogen embrittlement”, a material fatigue caused by the penetration of hydrogen into the metal lattice, leading to the formation of cracks. A risk to be taken seriously. Another aspect to be taken seriously: hydrogen is the chemical element with the lowest density and diffuses comparatively easily through materials. This requires special solutions for spindle and housing seals.
When using hydrogen, high temperature fluctuations and operating pressures, which further increase the risk of diffusion, are also unavoidable. This is because hydrogen has a lower energy density by volume than natural gas. This means: to store the same amount of energy, a higher pressure is usually required. The spectrum of operating temperatures is also much wider: hydrogen liquefies at atmospheric pressure at a temperature of minus 253 °C – liquefied natural gas (LNG) at minus 162 °C.
Special caution is also required for another reason: Hydrogen is odourless as well as tasteless and, depending on the concentration, can react explosively with the ambient air.
Material testing for hydrogen-compatible materials
As a hydrogen valve manufacturer, we at PRUSS have decades of expertise in the use of hydrogen-compatible materials and in the development of sealing systems that are specially adapted to the high diffusion behaviour of hydrogen. When selecting materials, we therefore examine with the greatest care their suitability for use in terms of hardness values, explosive decompression and ductility – in accordance with:
- DGRL 2014/68/EU (PED)
- API 6A, API 60, ASME
- Machinery Directive 2006/42/EU
- REACH regulation 1907 /2006
Hydrogen control valves/SSV technology from PRUSS
Our hydrogen control valves are available with full metal sealing and meet the extreme tightness requirements of hydrogen applications. We design our static and movable sealing systems in such a way that they can, in principle, be operated completely maintenance-free.
All series in our range are suitable for use in hydrogen applications:
- BR 300 straight from
- BR 450 angle type
- Fuel control and quick-closing valves up to 250° C with leakage class VI and control ratios of up to 350:1
- Process valves in the hydrolysis process
- Liquid separation with particularly resistant seat geometries with separate sealing and control edges
- Oxygen separation
- Pressure control
- Safety shut-off/quick-acting shut-off valves
- Pipeline control/rapid shut-off valves
- Storage/retrieval valves for cavern storage tanks
- Blow-off and anti-surge valves for compressor protection and control