Leading the way to a low-carbon future

The energy transition is transforming the world at a rapid pace, making it essential to continually evaluate new technologies and methodologiess for their safety and environmental impact. 

Key contributors in steering us towards a greener future include energy carriers such as ammonia and hydrogen, along with cutting-edge technologies like carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS). However, these come with unique safety and environmental concerns.

To navigate these challenges, DNV’s consequence and risk solutions, Phast, Safeti, KFX and EXSIM, simulate the behaviour of various materials, including ammonia, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen, providing a vital step in a creating a safer, low-carbon future.

Hydrogen: clean energy solution with flammable risks 

Hydrogen is a clean energy carrier that can be produced from a variety of sources, including renewable sources, such as solar and wind power. 

It can potentially replace fossil fuels in transportation, heating and power generation. 

But it is extremely explosive and flammable and is typically stored at very high pressures or at low temperatures (-250°C). Unlike common hydrocarbon energy sources, hydrogen is odourless, colourless, and buoyant, making leak detection difficult. 

Hydrogen also has high flammability and low ignition energy, which means it can ignite more easily.

Ammonia: potential green energy with toxic hazards 

Ammonia can be used as a fuel or energy carrier and can be produced using renewable energy sources. Used in fuel cells, it can generate electricity without emitting greenhouse gases (GHGs). 

As ammonia is commonly used to produce fertilizers, the production and distribution infrastructure is already widely known. However, in addition to being flammable, ammonia is toxic at low concentrations, meaning dispersion over large distances poses a risk.

Carbon dioxide: energy production byproduct with asphyxiation risks 

CCUS technologies take carbon dioxide emissions from industrial facilities and store them underground. 

In the event of an accidental release of carbon dioxide, it is important to model potential solid deposition and subsequent dispersion of a dense gas cloud, impacted by terrain and wind. It can displace oxygen and cause asphyxiation, which makes it important to model its unique physical effects accurately.

Testing and validation 

Ongoing testing and validation work is crucial for the safe and effective deployment of these decarbonization solutions. With increased focus on technologies related to hydrogen, ammonia and CCUS, the expectation of accurate hazard predictions using the latest data is greater than ever. 

At DNV, we have been committed for over 40 years to providing the most accurate consequence and risk tools: Phast, Safeti, KFX and EXSIM. 

With our Spadeadam Testing and Research Centre and through projects such as Hy4Heat, HyStreet, the H21 Network innovation project, and the MarHySafe project, we are addressing challenges for a wide variety of hydrogen applications. 

Spadeadam is also a critical venue for joint industry projects (JIPs) and field test efforts to validate the models and ensure new technology is incorporated in our models. 

Joint industry projects 

DNV is currently leading three JIPs to enhance computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modelling capabilities, focusing on hydrogen, ammonia and carbon dioxide safety. In collaboration with Equinor, TotalEnergies, Vår Energi and Horisont Energi we are developing solutions for mitigating accidental releases.  

The modelling and development from the JIPs will be implemented in KFX and EXSIM, and lessons learned will also be shared in Phast and Safeti, leading to improved accuracy and effectiveness of these tools. 

The energy transition is essential for a sustainable future. With DNV’s consequence and risk modelling software, companies have the tools they need to assess and manage risk, ensuring the energy transition is safe and secure. 

Discover how we are leading three JIPs to enhance computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modelling capabilities, focusing on hydrogen, ammonia and carbon dioxide safety

Explore our solutions:



Control your hazards by modelling discharge, dispersion, fires, explosions and toxic effects.



Make cost-effective decisions and manage risk throughout the asset lifecycle.



Advanced dispersion and fire modelling using computational fluid dynamics (CFD).



Advanced explosion modelling using computational fluid dynamics (CFD).

Discover digital tools to aid the pipeline transportation of hydrogen, ammonia, CO2 and biomethane

Ensuring fit-for-purpose pipelines for a safe transition.

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