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JFE Steel Corporation

Nippon Foundation
JFE Steel’s R&D into Line Pipe for Transporting High–pressure Hydrogen Gas
Selected for Nippon Foundation-DeepStar Joint Project Phase II

JFE Steel Corporation has been conducting research and development (R&D) on the characterization of line pipe materials for high pressure hydrogen transportation using our products in hydrogen-related technology development projects under the Nippon Foundation-DeepStar Joint Research & Development Program on Offshore Oil and Natural Gas, which is being conducted from 2021-2026 in cooperation with major oil companies to advance decarbonization initiatives. This time, the research results of the project on Phase I for about one year have been recognized and the project has been adopted as Phase II. JFE Steel will work with DeepStar consortium members ExxonMobil, Chevron of the USA and TotalEnergies of France to establish evaluation criteria and methods for using the company’s UOE pipe to transport high-pressure hydrogen safely and reliably, with a view to realizing the world’s first commercial high-pressure hydrogen deep water pipeline.


JFE Steel is pursuing technological development to meet the needs of oil companies under the shared goal of contributing to decarbonization. In the project, JFE Steel’s Steel Research Laboratory in Chiba, Japan will research the toughness properties required for high-pressure hydrogen pipelines, particularly through the application of Engineering Critical Assessment (ECA), a process that uses the known properties and stress histories of materials to determine criteria for ensuring acceptable risk tolerances in production and assured performance in the field. They will also conduct fracture toughness tests in high-pressure hydrogen environments using the specimen taken from steel pipe to evaluate its toughness.


The Nippon Foundation is Japan’s largest philanthropic foundation engaged mainly in supporting projects related to marine vessels/ocean affairs, public welfare and international cooperation initiatives funded with proceeds from boat racing operated by local governments in Japan.


The DeepStar consortium includes INPEX(Japan, )Shell (UK), Equinor (Norway) and other companies engaged in offshore oil and natural gas exploration, development and production worldwide, and also companies, universities and research institutes that are supporting these companies in their development of marine technology.


Given that hydrogen combustion produces no CO2, its potential for large-scale power generation and other applications is being explored worldwide. In the future, transporting large quantities of hydrogen from receiving terminals to power plants will require pipelines similar to those used for natural gas. However, since hydrogen reduces the ductility of steel by making it brittle, so research is being conducted to improve the quality of steel pipelines and to develop evaluation methods for safety standards.


Going forward, the JFE group will continue to pursue carbon neutrality through R&D aimed at helping industrial customers expand the supply and use of hydrogen, ultimately to realize a world powered by carbon-free hydrogen.


About JFE Steel Corporation

JFE Steel Corporation, one of the world’s leading integrated steel producers, was established through the consolidation of NKK Corporation and Kawasaki Steel Corporation in 2003. The company operates several steelworks in Japan and numerous branch offices and affiliates throughout the world. JFE Steel leverages world-class technologies and know-how to produce a wide range of products based on its “Only One, Number One” strategy of focusing on unique and best-in-class products. The company reported consolidated sales of 2,255 billion yen and consolidated crude steel output of 23.96 million tons in the fiscal year ended March 2021.

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