The von Karman Institute
Prof. Michel De Paepe (UGent)
Prof. Delphine Laboureur (VKI)
Advanced characterization of densified cryogenic hydrogen
Research video pitch
Slush hydrogen is promising to increase the volumetric energy density for storage capabilities. This PhD will dive deeper in the advanced characterization of thermodynamic slush properties in storage conditions.
A promising solution to increase the energy storage capabilities of hydrogen is to densify it to its slush state: a multi-phase mixture of vapor, liquid and solid crystals near to the thermodynamic triple point temperature.
Slush hydrogen features, indeed, 15% higher volumetric energy density and 18% lower enthalpy with respect to the single-phase liquid state, resulting in a better resistance against boil-offs and heat losses. These characteristics enable longer holding time and reduced insulation requirements in hydrogen energy storage and transportation. However, such benefits come with many scientific and technical challenges.
This research topic ambitiously aims to dive deeper in the advanced characterization of thermodynamic slush properties, such as the slush composition (crystals shape and size), the aging dynamic (stratification and melting), the slush rheological features and its behavior in transport pipelines and their components (pipes, pumps, valves). Scalability aspects and evaluation of potential use of substitute fluids for the purpose will be taken into consideration to ideally provide wide-range applicability results.
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