VTT, GTK and industrial partners initiate groundbreaking research project on hydrogen storage

News, Press release

VTT and GTK, and industrial partner organizations are launching a pioneering research project Hydrogen UnderGround (HUG) focused on underground storage of hydrogen. As Finland aims to foster its national hydrogen industry, large-scale hydrogen storage research emerges as a critical step forward. This initiative represents the first public hydrogen storage endeavor of this scale in Finland.

Hydrogen underground storages are widely seen to play a critical role in the green hydrogen value chain as the production and demand of hydrogen needs to be balanced. Storages are necessary to enable the stable supply of hydrogen to companies utilizing green hydrogen, who cannot operate in an economically sound way without hydrogen storage. Storing hydrogen above ground, akin to traditional methods for natural gas, proves impractical for cost and safety reasons. Preliminary reviews affirm underground storage as the most affordable and safe option on a large scale. Because Finland lacks natural ground formations suitable for gas storage, the focus of the HUG project is on constructed gas storage solutions.

The two-year project brings together 16 esteemed partners, with VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Geological Survey of Finland GTK assuming the central roles in project coordination and research activities.

“The overall goal of the HUG project is to build the basis for a large-scale hydrogen storage concept for the Finnish hydrogen business and technology ecosystem. The project also aims to establish pathways for continued research, inviting partner companies to contribute to ongoing advancements in the field,” say Project Managers Pasi Valkokari from VTT and Teemu Lindqvist from GTK.

The project is co-funded by Business Finland, and it is a part of the Neste’s and Valmet’s Veturi ecosystems.

“Hydrogen is a key component of Neste’s refinery processes, and we are dedicated to advancing the national hydrogen industry. Project HUG provides invaluable support towards this goal. Harnessing the collaborative power of our Veturi ecosystem, we aim to unite industry and academic stakeholders, leveraging collective expertise and resources,” says Antti Pohjoranta from Neste's renewable hydrogen & Power-to-X innovation business platform.

“Valmet has served the hydrogen industry for over 50 years. The HUG research project is seeking to find answers to critical automation technology questions that are essential not only for hydrogen storage but also for the whole hydrogen production and consumption ecosystem. This project is also a part of Valmet’s Beyond Circularity R&D program and ecosystem, which aims to enable our customer industries to shift to carbon neutrality and facilitate the green transition,” says Juha-Pekka Jalkanen, Director, Process Automation, Automation Systems business line, Valmet. 

For more information:

Project management: Senior Scientist Pasi Valkokari [email protected] +358 40 8278919
Company collaboration:  Business development manager Jutta Nyblom [email protected] +358 40 5388430

Project management: Senior geologist Teemu Lindqvist [email protected] +358 29 503 2171

Pasi Valkokari
Pasi Valkokari
Jutta Nyblom
Jutta Nyblom
Business Development Manager
Our vision beyond 2030

Green hydrogen can be used for emission-free storage and carrier of energy. It offers possibilities to shift to the global use and recycling of clean energy.