Hydrogen to smell like natural gas for the first time
Hydrogen to smell like natural gas for the first time By Neil Travers, H21 Project Manager
As natural gas contains no smell, a distinct and widely recognised odour is added to warn everyone of a potential gas leak. As hydrogen is also odourless, it’s important that a potential leak can be recognised in the same way. After years of familiarising the public with the smell of natural gas it is expected that, if hydrogen is widely used in the gas network in the future, it will be odourised in the same way.
In the South Bank area of Middlesbrough, construction is underway on the H21 Phase 2b Project, where a disused network of gas mains will be used to test operational procedures under 100% hydrogen conditions.
The site has now taken delivery of a bespoke unit to odourise the hydrogen on site once commissioned. The dual pump system will enable an odorant to be added to the hydrogen as it is distributed into the gas mains in the same way that natural gas is odourised today.
Not only is this project the first time an existing part of the UK’s gas distribution network will be converted from natural gas to 100% hydrogen it’s also the first time hydrogen will be odourised in the network using this technology.