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Ansaldo Energia and Equinor collaborate on power generation sector

The collaboration is set to combat the climate change crisis as it is one of today’s most important environmental and social concerns. (Image source: Willi Heidelbach/Pixabay)

Ansaldo Energia and Equinor has collaborated on validation of 100 per cent hydrogen gas turbine combustor

Compared to natural gas the main challenge of hydrogen combustion is its increased reactivity resulting in a decrease of engine performance for conventional premix combustion systems. Equipped with unique sequential combustion technology, Ansaldo Energia’s GT36 and GT26 gas turbines are set to overcome the drawback allowing the utilisation of the full range of hydrogen in a low NOx premix system.

Climate change is one of today’s most important environmental and social concerns. In order to achieve the Paris Agreement's goals, decarbonisation of the power generation sector is essential. Hydrogen-fired gas turbines allow for CO2-free dispatchable power generation. CO2-free hydrogen can be either produced via electrolysis using renewable power (green hydrogen) or from natural gas applying dedicated CCS technology (blue hydrogen). The capability to store energy in hydrogen for medium to longterm can also be used to alleviate variations in renewable power generation.

The GT36 H-class gas turbine combustor can be operated with a volumetric hydrogen content in natural gas of 0 to 50 per cent. Recent full-scale high-pressure tests showed the feasibility of operating up to 70 per cent hydrogen without power or efficiency derating and the possibility to burn up to 100 per cent. 2 To further develop this fuel flexibility capability, Ansaldo Energia and Equinor joined forces and signed a collaboration agreement. The purpose of this collaboration is to advance the hydrogen combustion technology with fullscale, full pressure combustor validation tests. To this regard, the main goals are the optimisation for ultralow NOx emissions, operational flexibility and minimisation of engine derating at very high hydrogen contents.

Equinor is co-funding these combustor testing activities for hydrogen.