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Projects: Projects for Investigator
Reference Number NIA_NGN_207
Title H21 -Domestic and Commercial Metering
Status Completed
Energy Categories Fossil Fuels: Oil Gas and Coal(Oil and Gas, Refining, transport and storage of oil and gas) 25%;
Hydrogen and Fuel Cells(Hydrogen, Hydrogen transport and distribution) 75%;
Research Types Applied Research and Development 100%
Science and Technology Fields SOCIAL SCIENCES (Economics and Econometrics) 25%;
ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Mechanical, Aeronautical and Manufacturing Engineering) 25%;
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Project Contact
No email address given
Cadent Gas
Award Type Network Innovation Allowance
Funding Source Ofgem
Start Date 01 April 2017
End Date 01 December 2018
Duration 20 months
Total Grant Value £360,000
Industrial Sectors Technical Consultancy
Region London
Programme Network Innovation Allowance
Investigators Principal Investigator Project Contact , Cadent Gas (99.999%)
  Other Investigator Project Contact , Northern Gas Networks (0.001%)
Web Site http://www.smarternetworks.org/project/NIA_NGN_207
Objectives The key objectives of the project are to provide factual, evidence based data to initial assessment of the suitability of the existing, installed UK meter stock to help determine the technical and economic implications of converting the gas networks to hydrogen. Undertaking this project will answer the key questions of;Are existing domestic, commercial and network meters suitable for operation on hydrogen?If not, can a conversion factor/ correction be applied?Will industry need to develop a new range of meters suitable for installation on a hydrogen network?What will be the impact on the existing UK gas industries below seven bar meter stockWhat will be the commercial impact for any associated errors for GDN business plans i. e. energy reconciliation to the shippers and impact on the leakage modelAnswering these key questions will inform the economic model for hydrogen conversion and UK wide deployment. Furthermore, the project outcomes could help inform strategies for industry actions if the existing UK meter stock is found unsuitable for operating on a hydrogen network. The project should deliver the following results;Development of an appropriate below seven bar meter testing methodology for meters operating on 100% hydrogen utilizing international best practice and expertise from the Association of Meter Operators. An evidence based assessment of the operational performance of a representative cross section of existing UK domestic, commercial and network below seven bar meters operating on hydrogenAn evidence based assessment of the safety performance of a representative selection of UK domestic and commercial below seven bar meter regulators operating on hydrogen. An assessment of the Impact on current regulatory practices such as energy reconciliation. Provide the basis for considerations for gas industry GD2 business plan provisions and potential opportunities for the smart metering programme. Provide base information for assessing the commercial impacts of metering in hydrogen conversion scenario modeling.
Abstract The H21 - Leeds City Gate Project assessed the feasibility of converting a major city’s gas network from natural gas to hydrogen. The project demonstrated the feasibility of the hydrogen conversion concept, developed detailed cost estimates for the conversion of the Leeds area and an estimate of the costs for an incremental roll out of hydrogen conversion nationwide. The H21 Leeds city gate project identified (Section 10) the next steps required to move this concept towards a policy decision through a series of strategic projects aimed at filling critical evidence gaps, this was referred to as the "H21 roadmap". To execute this H21 roadmap will requirement a combination of large scale NIC type projects, a government led program of research and a suite of smaller NIA projects. These projects will ensure the UK gas networks will understand the impact of hydrogen conversion in four key areas: Application and impact of new equipment within the network. This will ensure a future conversion to hydrogen comprises the optimised selection of assets utilising the best technologies from around the world in the interests of gas customers. Transportation of a different form of gas, i. e. 100% hydrogen on existing licensee assetsOperation of the network and its configuration when transporting 100% hydrogen. The commercial impact of a hydrogen conversion and the alterations required to current commercial practices across the gas industry e. g energy efficiency losses across hydrogen production assets, different leakage model impacts etc. This work will support the requirement for government to make firm energy policy decisions by the early 2020s. Without this suite of projects the opportunity for 100% hydrogen to play a significant role in future decarbonisation pathways may not be realistically considered. This could have a significant impact on UK gas customers if alternative non-optimized policy decisions are subsequently put into force. This NIA project will focus on section 4. 3 and 4. 4 of the H21 roadmap. This project will determine the suitability of existing domestic, commercial and smart meters, assessing their suitability for operation on a hydrogen network. There are over 30 million domestic and commercial meters installed across the UK gas customers. Furthermore there are numerous meters installed on the below 7 bar network, providing flow information critical to the operations of the gas distribution networks. The H21 roadmap identified the following potential actions required for hydrogen conversion in respect of existing domestic, commercial and smart meters;Do Nothing - the meters still work within acceptable toleranceDevelop a correction factor - for example, if the meters perform from an integrity point of view (safety) but has an error in terms of measurement, could a corrective factor be established for meters originally designed for methane but now operating on hydrogen. Partial upgrade alongside the smart metering rollout programUpgrade as part of the conversion process. Each option could have a differing economic, logistical and technical impact on the hydrogen implementation strategy. Replacing the existing meter stock in the UK could add significant cost to the overall conversion programme and add major logistical challenges. It is imperative to understand which option(s) are technically feasible to ensure the optimum strategy is adopted. This will minimise the impact on UK gas customers whilst ensuring the gas networks and wider industry understand the full remit of what is involved in the conversion process. To identify the optimum solution from the options listed above, we need to understand the safety and technical performance of the existing UK meter stock, to determine their suitability for operation on a hydrogen network. This project will test a representative cross section of domestic, commercial and smart meters to assess their safety and operational performance whilst operating on hydrogen as opposed to natural gas. The project will also test meter regulators and assess the potential and cost for installation of an excess flow valve as an additional safety feature. The metering and control of hydrogen entering a property is a potential challenge in any hydrogen conversion programme. The project will provide answers to the following potential problems;Are existing gas meters gas tight for hydrogen especially plastic components or seals?How accurate are the different designs of existing gas meters with hydrogen?What are the implications of hydrogen on the ATEX specification of existing meters containing batteries, especially SMART meters?What is the performance of existing meter regulators with hydrogen, especially their propensity to weep when ‘locked-up’ and the size of their pressure balance orifices. What is the impact of hydrogen conversion on the below seven bar meter population within the UK gas networksShould the UK gas networks and/or smart metering programme consider the installation of excess control valves in GD2 business plans or alongside the smart metering programme respectively In executing the project it is important to fully engage with the metering operator and manufacturing community. The project will work closely with IGEM (Institute of Gas Engineers and Managers) and representatives from the UK gas metering community via the Association of Meter Operators to ensure the scope of the testing programme is sufficient to provide a viable representative cross section of the existing UK meter community and that the test results will be credible and fully validated in line with industry standards. The project will consist of three phases;Phase 1 - A review of the worldwide hydrogen meter technologies and applicationsDuring phase one the project will undertake a review of the use of gas meters and meter regulators operating with Town Gas, natural gas, LPG, and hydrogen. This will include meters used in places like Hong Kong, Singapore, China and the established Japanese and Danish hydrogen networks as well as the UK. Additionally expertise will be sought from the existing metering operators who supply direct to the industrial hydrogen market. As the project will be testing meters outside the manufacturer’s specification, a key element of this review will be to provide the base data for the risk assessments required for the testing programme. This stage is essential as a pre-cursor to phase 2. This is because there are little or no small volumetric meters in manufacture or operation globally it is impossible to fully determine the methodology, calibration and verification required for the hydrogen meter testing programme without this initial comprehensive review. Phase 2 - Meter and regulator testing programmeDuring phase two of the project we will develop and design a testing programme to provide an initial assessment of the suitability of the existing, UK domestic and commercial meter stock to operate on hydrogen. The testing methodology and testing rig design will be developed in collaboration with the Association of Meter Operators, using information and data gathered during phase 1 of the project. The meter testing programme will be developed to satisfy the key performance indicators, detailed in the Measurement Industrial directive 2014/32/EU. The scale of the testing programme will be developed to consist of a representative sample of the following meter types and regulators;U type metersE types metersSmart metersRotary metersRegulatorsThe testing programme will be developed to assess the following;Safety Performance - Testing to ensure the meter and regulator are leak proof when operating on hydrogenTechnical Performance - Testing to provide an initial assessment of the impact on meter and regulator components when operating on hydrogenOperational Performance - Testing to assess the measurement performance across the full operational flow rangesThe testing programme and will be carried out by a suitably qualified and accredited testing organisation to ensure that results from the testing programme can be validated. As the scope and methodology for the phase 2 testing programme cannot be fully defined we have made an allowance for the phase 2 works in the project budget, based on discussions with the meter operators and IGEM. Phase 3 - Collation of data and reportingDuring this phase of the project, results from the testing programme will be collated and a final report produced. The report will provide an initial assessment of the operational and safety performance of the meters, regulators and excess flow valves tested, providing recommendations on their suitability to operate on a hydrogen network. The report will also provide an initial indication of the commercial impacts for any corrective / recommended actions in a hydrogen conversion programme.Note : Project Documents may be available via the ENA Smarter Networks Portal using the Website link above
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 20/08/18