Investigations on the integrity of wells and technical components exposed to highly corrosive conditions in geological hydrogen underground reservoirs


01.01.2016 - 30.09.2019


Dr. Viktor Reitenbach
Prof. Dr. Leonhard Ganzer


A goal of the German Federal Government is to increase the proportion of wind energy in the German energy supply system and simultaneously avoid associated weather-related fluctuations in electricity production, for example, through the long-term storage of energy in variety of media. The production of hydrogen through implementation of electrolysis of water received some attention. However, this requires a fundamental shift in the conception of storing large amounts of hydrogen. A novel approach is the employment of depleted oil and gas fields or pre-existing natural gas storages as geological underground hydrogen storages. However, the provided locations must guarantee that hydrogen or hydrogen gas mixtures be exploited safely and sustainably whilst avoiding uncontrollable leakage to the surface. Potential points of weakness in many production and storage wells are situated at the near-wellbore region. Employed materials such as steel, cement and elastomer seals are exposed to caustic environments at high pressures and temperatures, whereby interactions between in-situ fluids, stored gas and subsurface equipment may interact and react with each other. Unwanted corrosion and other alterations of the underground storage can compromise security and subsequently its sealing efficiency leading to potential for leaks and consequently potential environmental damage. The goal of HyINTEGER is to identify and analyze potential interactions between natural and technical components to assess the suitability of porous underground storages containing hydrogen. For this purpose, laboratory experiments were conducted under site-specific conditions with a variety of gas phases (H2, H2+CH4, H2+CO2, CO2). Reservoir properties, integrity and fluid flow changes in the reservoir and along the borehole were assessed through mineralogical, petro physical and microbiological ivestigations. These assessments can estimate leakage risks and evaluate potential integrity issues of the well and reservoir. In addition, microbial interaction experiments for the near-wellbore region have allowed for numerical models to be built and subsequently their behavior in the subsurface to be simulated to better predict the future effects of hydrogen in underground storages.


  • Barganski, F.; Strobel, G.; Hagemann, B. (2019): Benchmark Study of Underground Hydrogen Storage in Eclipse. DGMK/ÖGEW-Frühjahrstagung.
  • Eddaoui, N., Panfilov, M., Saïd, A. (2019): Enhancement of hydrogen storage through microbial accumulation: modeling and numerical simulations. 10th International Conference on Hydrogen Production, Cluj-Napoca, Rumänien, 5/15/2019.
  • Feldmann, F.; Hagemann, B.; Ganzer, L.; Panfilov, M. (2016): Numerical simulation of hydrodynamic and gas mixing processes in underground hydrogen storages. In Environmental Earth Sciences 75 (16), p. 1165. DOI: 10.1007/s12665-016-5948-z.
  • Hagemann, B. (Ed.) (2018): Energiewende: Wasserstoff zur Speicherung erneuerbarer Energien.
  • Hagemann, B., Panfilov, M., Ganzer, L. (2016a): Modelling bio-reactive transport in underground hydrogen storages - Spatial separation of gaseous components. In : 15th European Conference on the Mathematics of Oil Recovery, ECMOR 2016. Amsterdam (Netherlands).
  • Hagemann, B., Panfilov, M., Ganzer, L. (2016b): Multicomponent gas rising through water with dissolution in stratified porous reservoirs ‐ Application to underground storage of H2 and CO2. In Journal of Natural Gas Science and Engineering 31, pp. 198–213. DOI: 10.1016/j.jngse.2016.03.019.
  • Hagemann, B., Panfilov, M., Ganzer, L. (Ed.) (2017): Microbial metabolic lag in a bio-reactive transport model for underground hydrogen storage.
  • Hagemann, B., Panfilov, M., Ganzer, L. (2018a): Field Scale Modeling Of Bio-Reactions During Underground Hydrogen Storage.
  • Hagemann, B., Panfilov, M., Ganzer, L. (Ed.) (2018b): A numerical model for reactive transport coupled with microbial growth on Darcy scale.
  • Henkel, S., Pudlo D., Enzmann, F., Reitenbach, V., Albrecht, D., Ganzer, L. & Gaupp, R. (2016): X-ray CT analyses, models and numerical simulations: a comparison with petrophysical analyses in an experimental CO2 study. In Solid Earth 7, pp. 917–927.
  • Henkel, S., Pudlo, D., Schatzmann, S. (2016): CO2 storage simulation in an autoclave using samples from an Early Triassic sandstone reservoir. In Energy Procedia 114, pp. 5299–5310.
  • Hogeweg, S.; Strobel, G.; Hagemann, B. (2019): Simulation of underground microbiological methanation in a conceptional well doublet system. DGMK/ÖGEW-Frühjahrstagung.
  • Panfilov, M. (2019): Physicochemical fluid dynamics in porous media. Applications in geosciences and petroleum engineering. Weinheim: Wiley-VCH. Available online at https://www.wiley.com/en-us/Physicochemical+Fluid+Dynamics+in+Porous+Media:+Applications+in+Geosciences+and+Petroleum+Engineering-p-9783527806584.
  • Panfilov, M., Eddaoui, N. (2018): Microbiological underground methanation: principle, bio-chemical and hydrodynamic models, and self-organization phenomena. InterPore 10th Annual Meeting and Jubilee, New Orleans, USA., 5/14/2018.
  • Pudlo, D., Henkel, S., Reitenbach, V., Albrecht, D., Ganzer, L.; Gaupp, R. (Eds.) (2016): Ergebnisse aus mineralogischen, chemischen, geohydraulischen Untersuchungen und der weitere Forschungsbedarf für eine Wasserstoff-Untergrundspeicherung.
  • Strobel, G.; Hagemann, B.; Ganzer, Leonhard (2019): History Matching of Bio-reactive Transport in an Underground Hydrogen Storage Field Case.


Daniel Albrecht
Birger Hagemann
Gion Strobel
Clemens Boersheim

Sponsors and Partners

This project is a cooperation with the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, the Helmholtz Centre Potsdam - GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences, the Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz and the Université de Lorraine supported by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi).