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PG&E launches study on hydrogen’s feasibility within gas pipelines

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Global Hydrogen Review,

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has announced that it is launching the nation’s most comprehensive end-to-end hydrogen study and demonstration facility, which will examine the future potential of zero-carbon hydrogen fuel as a renewable energy source for not only PG&E customers, but the entire global natural gas industry.


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The centrepiece of the study, known as Hydrogen to Infinity (H2∞), is a large-scale project that will blend hydrogen and natural gas in a stand-alone transmission pipeline system. H2∞ will enable PG&E and its partners (Northern California Power Agency [NCPA], Siemens Energy, the City of Lodi, GHD Inc., and University of California at Riverside) to conduct a complete study of different levels of hydrogen blends in a multi-feed, multi-directional natural gas pipeline system that is independent from its current natural gas transmission system.

The dedicated facility will allow for a controlled and safe study of hydrogen injection, storage, and combustion of different hydrogen blends in a variety of end uses. NCPA’s Lodi Energy Center power plant is located adjacent to H2∞ and will accept a hydrogen-natural gas blend for electric generation in the Siemens Energy 5000F4 gas turbine.

“This demonstration facility is truly an exciting advancement of our goal to diversify our natural gas system for our customers and consider hydrogen’s role as part of California’s decarbonised future,” said PG&E Gas Engineering Senior Vice President, Janisse Quiñones. “As we advance PG&E’s climate commitments and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, particularly from fossil fuels, our feasibility studies of hydrogen are an essential part of our growth and evolution as a natural gas utility. This new facility will provide critical research, close information gaps, and unlock opportunities not only for PG&E, but for the entire global network of natural gas pipeline operators.”

H2∞ will include a new 130-acre facility located in Lodi, California, US, that will serve as a study laboratory that incorporates production, pipeline transportation, storage, and combustion.

Areas of focus within the pilot include:

  • Technical, operational, and safety needs.
  • Market development.
  • Energy resiliency and flexibility.
  • Commercial and government partnerships.
  • Unprecedented functional test environment for ongoing research.
  • Training environment for new technology.

In addition, PG&E is contemplating this facility being the centerpiece for a potential Northern California hydrogen hub.

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