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Linde supplies DLR gas turbine test stand with liquid hydrogen


The technology company The Linde Group has been awarded a contract to supply hydrogen to the combustion chamber test facilities run by Germany’s national research center for aeronautics and space (DLR) in Cologne.

At the DLR's combustion chamber test facilities run by the Institute of Propulsion Technology, researchers are investigating efficient, flexible, low-emission ways to burn fossil and alternative fuels. The objective is to further optimise efficiency in the combustion chambers of aircraft turbines and stationary gas turbines.

"This project clearly demonstrates how the special properties of hydrogen make it ideal for a wide range of innovative applications," says Dr Andreas Opfermann, Head of Clean Energy & Innovation Management at Linde. "Hydrogen is not just growing in popularity as a zero-emissions fuel in the automotive segment, it also has huge potential in the aviation industry and as large-scale electricity storage. We are proud to have the opportunity to channel our long-standing expertise into this exceptional DLR project."

Through this deal with Linde, DLR is addressing rising demand for test facilities specialised in alternative fuels. High energy density, carbon-free combustion and suitability for high-powered combustion engines are making hydrogen an extremely attractive option among turbine manufacturers. By 2013, Linde will have built an extensive on-site supply infrastructure, thus eliminating the need for high-pressure hydrogen deliveries by tube trailer trucks. At the heart of the new infrastructure is a cryogenic storage tank with an innovative cryopump system developed by Linde. This converts liquid hydrogen stored at a temperature of -253° C into high-pressure gaseous hydrogen. Direct compression of the liquid hydrogen reduces energy consumption compared with conventional compressor systems by up to 70%. It also reduces maintenance effort and wear-and-tear.

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