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Reference Number NIA2_SGN0020
Title Leakage Management in the Energy System Transition
Status Started
Energy Categories HYDROGEN and FUEL CELLS(Hydrogen, Hydrogen transport and distribution) 20%;
FOSSIL FUELS: OIL, GAS and COAL(Oil and Gas, Refining, transport and storage of oil and gas) 80%;
Research Types Applied Research and Development 100%
Science and Technology Fields ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Mechanical, Aeronautical and Manufacturing Engineering) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Project Contact
No email address given
SGN - Scotland
Award Type Network Innovation Allowance
Funding Source Ofgem
Start Date 01 June 2022
End Date 28 February 2023
Duration ENA months
Total Grant Value £99,317
Industrial Sectors Energy
Region Scotland
Programme Network Innovation Allowance
 
Investigators Principal Investigator Project Contact , SGN - Scotland (99.999%)
  Other Investigator Project Contact , SGN - Southern England (0.001%)
  Industrial Collaborator Project Contact , SGN (0.000%)
Web Site https://smarter.energynetworks.org/projects/NIA2_SGN0020
Objectives The ultimate objective of this project is to assess and review the Leakage Reduction Management Model (LRMM) to understand where improvements can be made, how and where the model can be updated and its role in the energy system transition. This project has the potential to provide significant environmental and financial benefits to SGN, and provide savings to customers through reduced leakage, and therefore reduced cost of leakage. The project proposes to undertake a sensitivity analysis of the LRMM, review natural gas leakage rates of above ground installations (AGIs), review SGNs cathodic protection (CP) records, review the CISBOT programme and its impact and assess assumptions around asset records of cast iron and spun iron. These elements will be factored into a CBA to determine the most cost-effective next steps, maximising the reduction of leakage and therefore emissions. Finally, the project proposes to assess the application of the LRMM to the energy system transition and the future hydrogen gas network. Work Package 1 – Overview of the LRMMThe current version of the LRMM will be subject to a sensitivity analysis to understand which factors most affect the outputs. Following this analysis, the top three factors (in addition to those identified separately below) will be reviewed in more detail to understand accuracies and whether amendments to the model in these areas may be justified and viable. The factors under consideration include, but are not limited to, the proportions of different types of services (PE-PE, PE metal etc.), the MEG concentration calculation, the proportion of lead yarn joints, and the changing profile of ferrous main failures.A cost benefit analysis (CBA) will then be undertaken, using the RIIO-2 CBA methodology, to determine the most cost-effective options for maintaining the network and managing leakage. Carbon emission calculation will be included in this analysis to better understand the savings that could occur whilst working towards the net-zero targets. Recommendations will then be made for potential updates to the LRMM.Work Package 2 – Review of AGIsA review of the natural gas leakage rates of Above Ground Installations (AGIs) will be carried out. This will start with a review of the Above Ground Installation Shrinkage report to examine the work carried out by DNV (Advantica) in 2003.An assessment of the following will then be undertaken:AGIs with water bath heaters, especially those with immersion tube heaters. SGN will provide a report giving details of analysis in this area. The impact of the findings of this report on the LRMM will be documented.The location of the leakage from the AGI will be considered and leakage rates revised on the basis that leakage from vents will not be relevant for newer units which do not vent.The treatment of own use gas within the LRMM, and allowance for sites that have heat pumps and so no own use gasThe impact of AGI upgrades on LRMM.Analysis of SGN AGI asset data will be carried out to determine the impact of any changes. The calculations and leakage rates within the LRMM will be revised and updated as necessary.Work Package 3 – Cathodic ProtectionCathodic protection is used to ensure that metal pipelines and assets do not corrode and leak. SGN cathodic protection records will be reviewed and matched to the asset failure records to determine the correlation (if any) between CP systems and asset deterioration. The type of system and maintenance regime will be included in the analysis. A cost benefit analysis will then be undertaken to determine the relative merits of maintaining CP systems or allowing more failures to occur. This will feed into the main CBA.Work Package 4 – CISBOTRemediation of joints using CISBOT is likely to reduce leakage but is not currently accounted for in the LRMM. A review of the recent SGN CISBOT programme will be undertaken and analysis undertaken to determine an appropriate modification for the CISBOT-remediated pipes in the LRMM. Work Package 5 – Comparison of Cast and Spun Iron Leakage RatesDifferent leakage rates for cast iron and spun iron are used in the LRMM, and there is a substantial difference for larger assets. A review of the historical development of the two materials will be undertaken. The SGN asset and failure database will then be interrogated in the light of the historical review to determine the accuracy of pipe material assignations and data cleansing applied where appropriate. Fracture and joint failure analysis will then be undertaken to determine whether there is an identifiable difference in failure rates and whether this aligns with the values in the LRMM. Recommendations will be made, including the usefulness of any supplementary fieldwork and any proposed amendments to the LRMM.Work Package 6 – Feasibility Study of the Application of Hydrogen in the Gas Networks to the LRMM As part of the UK government net-zero strategy, the introduction of low carbon alternatives for fuel sources such as hydrogen is being investigated. With this in mind, SGN would like to better understand the impact of hydrogen being introduced into the gas network and how this may affect the outputs of the LRMM.DNV proposes, as part of this project, to include an innovative feasibility study to gain a better understanding of the potential impact of hydrogen on emissions. Using the current LRMM for natural gas, an initial study will be completed to evaluate the existing model to determine the number and scope of updates that need to be made to ensure the model is correct for use with hydrogen. The report will detail each factor in the model and identify the number of factors that will require updating, to enable the changes to the existing model to be fully scoped.The report will also include a view on what the leakage management for network operators will likely need to look like with the introduction of 100% hydrogen into the network. This will include, but will not be limited to, mitigation actions such as the focus of leakage surveys (e.g. where PE pipe has been implemented there is likely little need to focus on the pipe itself rather more on the joints) and frequency of leakage surveys. The ultimate objective of this project is to assess and review the Leakage Reduction Management Model (LRMM) to understand where improvements can be made, how and where the model can be updated and its role in the energy system transition to 100% hydrogen. The project aims to provide recommendations on the requirements for hydrogen leakage modelling and management. 
Abstract The LRMM captures all the potential areas for leakage and shrinkage of natural gas from the network. This project proposes to undertake a sensitivity analysis of the LRMM, review leakage rates of above ground installations (AGIs), review SGNs cathodic protection (CP) records, review the CISBOT programme and its impact and assess assumptions around asset records of cast iron and spun iron. These elements will be factored into a CBA to determine the most cost-effective next steps, maximising the reduction of leakage and therefore emissions, for both natural gas in the existing network, and for hydrogen in the future network.Finally, the project proposes to assess the application of the LRMM to the energy system transition and the future hydrogen gas network. This opportunity will assess the best options for maintaining the network for future use and potentially lead to a reduction in methane and future hydrogen leakage, providing financial and environmental benefits. 
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 14/10/22