New Types of Energy
Ukraine has the greatest prospects for the development of green hydrogen energy among all members of the Energy Community. European experts noted the importance of RGC efforts intended to introduce new technologies in gas distribution networks which would make clean energy available to Ukrainian consumers.
Ukraine has an extensive gas infrastructure network, industrial sector and favorable conditions for renewable energy production; consequently, the country has huge potential for the development of clean energy.
To this end, Ukraine needs to develop standards, safety rules and clear responsibilities with respect to hydrogen and its use in existing gas networks. This is also necessary for all new gases, i.e. biogas and biomethane that can be pumped into the networks currently used to transport the natural gas.
RGC hydrogen project is the largest research and development program that will allow Ukraine to deliver on its potential and give real substance to its status as the strategic partner of the European Union within the frameworks of the hydrogen strategy.
RGC became the first Ukrainian company among 67 members of Ready4H2 consortium. The main task of the Ready4H consortium is to present the draft hydrogen strategy for Europe’s gas distribution industry in February 2022.
In October 2020, RGC joined the European Clean Hydrogen Alliance (ECHA) established under the auspices of the European Commission. In 2021, ECHA added RGC hydrogen project to its investment project pipeline intended to bring together all parts of the EU hydrogen market and match specific projects, investors and funding.
RGC hydrogen project began in February 2020. Already in August, five test sites were constructed in Volyn, Dnipropetrovsk, Zhytomyr, Ivano-Frankivsk and Kharkiv regions. Real models of regional gas distribution networks have been reproduced at these test sites.
Stages of RGC hydrogen project
Static field tests at test sites
Dynamic tests to study the impact of gas and hydrogen mixtures on conventional gas equipment
Analysis of test data acquired during the tests in the laboratories of research partners of RGC hydrogen project
The company finances all scientific and research laboratories and additional experiments. According to the plan, RGC hydrogen project will exceed 180 tests and experiments.
Research and development program of RGC hydrogen project is designed in line with scientific principles and allows to develop a technical redesign policy for the entire gas system so that Ukraine could take advantage of all the strengths of the European Green Deal. To this end, the project partners include leading research institutions:
- National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine
- E.O. Paton Electric Welding Institute, the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (PEWI)
- Ivano-Frankivsk National Technical University of Oil and Gas
- Karpenko Physico-Mechanical Institute, the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine
- Institute of Gas, the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine
- Coal Energy Technology Institute, the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine
- Lviv Polytechnic National University
- State-Owned Enterprise “Ivano-Frankivsk Scientific and Production Center for Standartization, Metrology and Certification”
- Coordinated by: Naftogazbudinformatyka, LTD
RGC has been developing the biomethane project since May 2021. Bioenergy Association of Ukraine (UABIO) is the project partner, which allows to coordinate measures pertaining to modernization of gas distribution systems and to develop production of biomethane and other synthetic gases.
The main areas of cooperation within the biomethane project include:
- implementation of optimal solutions for the creation of Ukraine’s domestic market in biomethane technologies;
- creation of favorable legal and technical conditions for market participants working on the projects for the production, transportation, distribution and use of biomethane;
- conducting pilot projects to create plants for biomethane production and their connection to gas distribution networks;
- modernization of energy and climate policies, regulations to promote economic growth and progress towards the integration of Ukraine’s energy sector with European markets;
- development of biomethane export projects.
Clean energy sources such as hydrogen, biogas and biomethane will stimulate the decentralization of gas distribution in Ukraine, which will reduce costs and enhance the reliability of energy supply. Where economically feasible, clusters will be created, i.e. local closed systems that will include clean energy production, transportation and consumption.
Gasification of those areas where the economy does not justify the conventional connection to gas networks will be promising, i.e. clean energy will ensure the reliable supply of decentralized areas.
Implementation of RGC hydrogen and biomethane projects became the first effective steps towards Ukraine’s engagement in European initiatives for the transition to green energy and European Green Deal initiatives.