Strohm and Evonik have been working together on the development of TCP since 2009. These are multilayer pipes, with an outer and inner layer made of plastic and a middle layer made of a carbon fiber composite. In the joint development, the outer and inner layers are made of polyamide 12 VESTAMID® NRG, and the middle layer consists of several layers of so-called unidirectional tapes VESTAPE® fused together, which are made of continuous carbon fibers with a matrix also of polyamide 12 from Evonik. The principle is copied from plant fibers. As in nature, the structure creates a very stable composite that can withstand high loads, but is still flexible enough that it is elastic-like the plant in the wind-and does not break.
TCP are currently used in conventional oil production in North and South America. Unlike pipes made with steel, the all-plastic, all-carbon fiber pipeline does not rust. As it requires no maintenance and has a long service life, it has become established in the offshore sector.
The memorandum of understanding with Strohm is aimed at using the pipe manufactured with VESTAMID® NRG and VESTAPE® for hydrogen transport. This is possible because polyamide 12 is insensitive to hydrogen and hydrogen embrittlement and has low hydrogen permeation. As part of the energy transition, electricity produced by floating offshore wind turbines is to be converted on site by electrolysis into green hydrogen, which, unlike electricity, can be transported over long distances.
"At Evonik, we strive to provide solutions that deliver high sustainability benefits to our customers, and we are pleased to bring a solution to market with our partner Strohm through this Memorandum of Understanding. We are proud of the role our jointly developed, environmentally friendly technology for hydrogen transport plays in supporting the transformation to more sustainability and climate-friendly solutions," says Dr. Ralf Düssel, Head of High Performance Polymers.