With a set of policy initiatives by the European Commission the European Green Deal has the comprehensive aim of making Europe climate neutral up to 2050. ENTSOG’s (European Network of Transmission System Operator for Gas) mission is to facilitate and enhance cooperation between national gas transmission system operators (TSOs) across Europe in order to ensure the development of a pan-European transmission system in line with European Union energy goals. It was established to promote the completion of the internal market for gas and stimulate cross-border trade, to ensure the efficient management and coordinated operation of the European gas network and to facilitate the network’s sound technical evolution.*

One of the pillars in the energy transition is the use of hydrogen. Solar energy is increasingly available in summer, but in the northern hemisphere it is primarily needed in winter. Wind energy is also increasingly available, but not where it is needed. In both cases, hydrogen can be used as a means of transport and also for energy storage. In this way hydrogen will play an important role in the integration of renewables into the energy system. When the production of hydrogen is sufficiently scaled up, hydrogen from renewable energy can play a major role in Europe becoming climate-neutral in the next few decades.

KROHNE has decades of experience with hydrogen in process measurement. Even the variable area flowmeters manufactured by company founder Ludwig Krohne were able to measure hydrogen 100 years ago. In the meantime, the product portfolio has been considerably expanded and hydrogen can now also be measured with ultrasonic, mass or vortex gas meters. For custody transfer measurement KROHNE can offer the ALTOSONIC V12 ultrasonic flow meter, which has been successfully used in high-precision natural gas measurement for more than 15 years. The following examples provide interesting insights into the various applications.

Custody transfer flow measurement of hydrogen 


The Berre Petrochemical Cluster is a nearly 1000 hectare complex located 30 km from Marseille in France on the lagoon of Étang de Berre. The site consists of a steam cracker and large polypropylene and polyethylene plants. One of the manufacturers demands the continuous flow measurement of hydrogen. The client was looking for a measurement of custody transfer flow that would be in line with the internal procedure under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX). KROHNE delivered a measuring system with the ultrasonic flow meter ALTOSONIC V12 (flange DN100, ASME Cl 300) and the flow computer SUMMIT 8800. The ultrasonic flow meter was built into a horizontal stainless steel tube with straight inlet and outlet runs. The measuring system complies with MID MI-002. In addition, KROHNE offered the „KROHNE Care“ expert system, which provided diagnostic functions for the ALTOSONIC V12 ultrasonic gas flow meter. Based on diagnostic parameters, this system interprets the functionality and accuracy of the measuring device around the clock. The 12-beam measuring device has a vertical diagnostic path that detects contamination at the bottom of the measuring tube. KROHNE also offered to commission the system and train personnel in the use of the two measuring devices. The system needed to have built-in pressure and temperature sensors for custody transfer measurements. KROHNE prepared the documents for the transfer of custody, including Calibration certificates, MID certificates, technical documentation, etc. The reliable and precise measurement according to MID is a clear advantage for the customer. The customer can now create invoices for which a MID approval applies, which also corresponds to the internal SOX procedure. Thanks to the „KROHNE Care“ diagnostic system and the diagnostic method for detecting contamination, this reliable and precise measuring system with self-monitoring enabled process optimization. As a result, production increased and the manufacturer had higher revenues.

Gasunie hydrogen pipeline from Dow to Yara brought into operation

Gasunie‘s hydrogen pipeline between Dow and Yara has started operations. This is the first time that an existing main gas transport pipeline has been modified for hydrogen transport. Hydrogen for industrial purposes is exchanged through the pipeline, which is no longer used to transport natural gas. The underground transport via the gas network ensures that hydrogen is transported safely and efficiently. The 12-kilometer hydrogen pipeline, which was the subject of agreements signed in March 2018 between Dow, Yara, ICL-IP and Gasunie Waterstof Services, went into operation. Last summer, connections were made in Dow and Yara and the gas pipeline was modified in some places to make it suitable for the transport of hydrogen. The pipeline was then filled with hydrogen. The pipeline is now used commercially to transport more than four kilotons of hydrogen per year. A later transport of hydrogen to ICL-IP is also part of the plan.


„This hydrogen pipeline marks an important point in our history. This is the first time that an existing gas transport pipeline has been modified to transport another gas than natural gas.” added Han Fennema, CEO of Gasunie. „The gas infrastructure plays a connecting and supporting role in the energy transition. In the future, we will increasingly transport various energy carriers such as hydrogen and green gas through our pipelines. As an independent network operator, we can connect hydrogen from different suppliers for transport to the most important industrial clusters in the Netherlands. This network can have a capacity of 10 gigawatts or more by 2030.“


Flow measurement of green hydrogen at a power-2-gas plant (P2G)


GRTgaz is one of the leading European operators in natural gas transmission. The company is an innovator in the field of sustainable energy generation and distribution. GRTgaz is the project coordinator of the Jupiter 1000 project (www.jupiter1000.eu), France‘s first industrial power 2 gas demonstrator (P2G) to be fed into the gas network in Fos-sur-Mer in southern France. This project was supported in particular by the French Agency for Ecological Change (ADEME), the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as well as the Provence-AlpesCôte d‘Azur administrative region and recognized by the Investments for the Future (PIA) program of the French Government. P2G is a technology that uses electrical energy to produce gaseous fuels. The Jupiter 1000 project uses renewable energy to generate hydrogen through the electrolysis of water. This green hydrogen can either be used as a fuel, energy carrier or feedstock and will play an important role in decarbonising industry and the energy sector. In the Jupiter 1000 project, the green hydrogen produced is used in two different ways to decarbonise the natural gas supply. First the hydrogen is fed directly into the network and forms a mixture of hydrogen and natural gas. Secondly, the hydrogen is converted into synthetic methane in which it reacts with captured CO2 in a nearby industrial site. The synthetic methane is then fed into the natural gas network. All flow meters with their control valves, pumps and gas analyzers are integrated into the existing project infrastructure. The flow meters for SNG, hydrogen and natural gas are connected to a single SUMMIT 8800 flow computer, with which the customer can set up all four flow meters independently and without additional KROHNE field staff. The versatile flow computer is dedicated to the energy calculation of various products and conditions. It is supplied with the Modbus communication protocol (RS 485) according to customer requirements. 

High temperature flow measurement of CO2 and H2 from a reactor column in steel production

TNO is an independent Dutch research organization focused on developing knowledge and innovations for practical applications. Together with their partners, TNO initiated the STEPWISE project to demonstrate the cost-effective carbon dioxide (CO2 ) capture from residual gases in the steel industry and to create value from the energy content of the flue gases. The technology demonstrated in this project helps the steel industry reduce their CO2 footprint and improve sustainability. The project is supported by the European Horizon 2020 Low Carbon Energy program.


One type of flue gas in steel production is blast furnace gas (BFG). It is a by-product of the iron ore reduction process in blast furnaces and it is commonly used as a fuel in steel works or is used in boilers and power plants. The heating value of the BFG is quite low as it mainly consists of nitrogen (55%), carbon monoxide (25%), carbon dioxide (20%) and hydrogen (2...4%).

In Luleå, Sweden, STEPWISE demonstrates in a steel plant how to achieve the removal of 14 t/day of CO2 from the blast furnace gases and to make a hydrogen-rich stream available. The captured CO2 can be transported and stored (CCS) or can be used as feedstock for the production of synthetic methanol, which can serve as a fuel in the steel plant. The hydrogen-rich stream can be used as fuel for power plants or as feedstock for the production of ammonia.

Ultrasonic tranducers make the difference

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KROHNE manufactures transducers from different materials. There are two variants, one from epoxy and one from titanium. Especially epoxy based transducers can measure up to 100% hydrogen. Titanium base alloys can pick up large amounts of hydrogen when exposed to these environments, especially at elevated temperatures. If the hydrogen remains in the titanium lattice, it may lead to severe degradation of the mechanical and fracture behavior of these alloys upon cooling.