Trelleborg Sealing Solutions launches the H2Pro™ range of sealing materials for all applications in the hydrogen value chain, including a new ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM) rubber for high-pressure environments over a wide temperature range, and a unique thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) for very low temperatures.
Solutions for the entire hydrogen value chain
Designed to accelerate innovation for sustainable technology, H2Pro™ has solutions for the challenges of hydrogen production, transportation and storage, and end use. Proven to withstand challenging application environments, the materials are suitable for high pressures, low temperatures and resist permeation, making them better able to withstand rapid gas decompression, while demonstrating excellent wear and extrusion properties.
The range includes two new materials specially designed for hydrogen applications. H2Pro™ EBT25 is a new EPDM for high-pressure environments over a wide temperature range, and Zurcon® H2Pro™ ZLT is a unique TPU for very low temperatures.
According to the relevant department in Trelleborg: “Hydrogen has an important role to play in the transition to a carbon-neutral world, both as a fuel source and as a means of storing surplus energy from renewable sources. Due to its inherent characteristics, hydrogen is difficult to seal. The growing H2Pro™ range, designed by our advanced global R&D teams, offers reliable sealing solutions for a wide range of applications, such as pumps, valves, connectors and many other devices in the hydrogen supply chain..”
Hydrogen sealing: a difficult challenge
Challenges include permeability and leakage, as hydrogen is the simplest element with the smallest molecular structure. Another is rapid gas decompression (RGD), in which hydrogen from a high-pressure system can be sucked into a gasket. If the system pressure is suddenly relieved, gas trapped in the gasket may expand and cause blistering and cracking of the gasket as the gas attempts to escape. Finally, the seals of the various hydrogen systems must withstand very harsh environments, such as high pressures up to 1,000 bar/14.34 psi (e.g. in high-pressure valves) and extremely low temperatures down to -250 °C/-418 °F (e.g. in the storage and transport of liquid hydrogen).
According to Trelleborg: “Because it is so difficult to seal, Trelleborg is creating application-specific materials and solutions to support all types of hydrogen-related companies, including those in the power generation, aerospace, off-highway, truck and bus, CPI, chemical transportation and marine sectors. As a long-standing global leader in polymer and elastomer solutions, we are ideally positioned to be your preferred hydrogen sealing partner.“.
Materials designed for specific applications
All H2Pro™ materials are specifically designed to provide excellent application-specific wear and extrusion properties, and are validated to key industry standards under a range of demanding conditions typical of hydrogen environments. Trelleborg uses advanced test benches to assess material aging to oxygen and ozone, hydrogen compatibility, leakage, permeability and ability to withstand RGD, as well as compliance with relevant international standards.
Zurcon® H2Pro™ ZLT has a very low permeability and shows superior ability to withstand RGD. It has a wide service temperature range, with excellent low temperature capabilities, excellent extrusion properties and wear resistance, and complies with Regulation (EC) 79/2009, SAE J2600 and ANSI CHMC 2. It can be manufactured as O-rings for static sealing of valves, filters, refueling nozzles, pumps, connectors and fittings, and as U-cups for static and dynamic applications such as valve stems, actuators and regulators.
H2Pro™ EBT25 demonstrates superior ability to withstand RGD, and features low permeability, a wide operating service temperature range, 85 Shore A hardness and excellent extrusion resistance. It complies with Regulation (EC) 79/2009, SAE J2600 and ANSI CHMC 2, and can be manufactured as O-rings for static sealing in valves, filters, refueling nozzles, pumps, connectors and fittings, and custom molded parts and frame gaskets for fuel cells and electrolysis equipment.
H2Pro™ materials are also available in a range of other sealing compounds and profiles, including:
- Turcon® polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) and thermoplastic compounds for use as Varilip® lip seals
- V-Stack seals for use in static and dynamic applications with cryogenically compressed hydrogen and liquid hydrogen (LH2)
- FKM seals for blue hydrogen
- Lower durometer EPDM compounds and silicone compounds for low pressure applications
- Metal gaskets for static applications of LH2
- Wear-resistant composite piston rings and bearings for compressor applications