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In a recent study published in the journal EnergiesPolish researchers analyzed the conceptual assumptions needed to design a theoretical multi-criteria system architecture model to stabilize the operation of an electric power distribution network based on a hydrogen energy buffer that took into account utility applications of green hydrogen.

To study: Structural model of power grid stabilization in green hydrogen supply chain system – conceptual assumptions. Image credit: Corona Borealis Studio/

After in-depth analysis and expert consultations, two dimensions of the structural model were identified with corresponding built-in variables. The first dimension included supply chain phases such as procurement, production, warehousing and distribution, while the second dimension took into account a comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach that included factors such as location, technique, economy-logistics and formality-legal.

Green Hydrogen Supply Chain System

One of the main problems with renewable energy sources (RES) is that their availability is not uniform and depends on the time of day, season, weather, lunar cycle and other conditions. geographical. Therefore, there is a requirement for the storage of excess electrical energy generated at a particular time so that it can compensate for the lack of energy at another point in time.

One such solution is the hydrogen buffer, which stabilizes the operation of electrical networks by converting excess electrical energy into “green hydrogen” in the form of an electrolyser, storage/storage in a hydrogen fuel and the conversion of hydrogen into electricity at times of periodic shortage. The conversion mechanism involves the electrolysis of water to split it into hydrogen and oxygen using electricity. The buffered hydrogen is then used in the fuel cell to generate electricity.

Diagram of the research process.

Diagram of the research process. Image credit: Frankowska, M. et al., Energies

There is a strong demand for system stabilization in hydrogen-based energy storage systems. Here, stabilizing the system is balancing electricity supply and demand, increasing grid flexibility while accommodating new energy producers from renewable sources, improving quality of the electricity supplied and the increase in the security and reliability of the network, which includes the resulting transmission losses.

About the study

In this study, researchers conducted a systematic literature review (SLR) of Web of Science (WoS) database articles to identify, integrate, and assess the state of research in the design of the d hydrogen supply for hydrogen-based green energy storage solutions. First, they identified, verified and selected variables for the development of a structural model concept.

The SLR involved three stages in which 42 articles were selected and studied in depth from among 311 articles chosen from the WoS database. The in-depth analysis of the content of the selected articles focused on the identification of economic-logistic, technical, location, formal-legal factors, the modeling of the processes of production, supply, storage and distribution of hydrogen from RES, and validation of obtained research results in the form of a structural model concept with the help of business representatives and scientists representing technical sciences (electrical engineering, energy, automation, chemical engineering ) and economic (distribution system operator perspective).

In addition, they indicated the strength of the correlation between the different factors.

Theoretical background and identification of model variables

There were three main components in the first phase of in-depth hydrogen supply chain (HSC) studies (between the years 2008 and 2012), namely the hydrogen production subsystem, the hydrogen transport, the hydrogen storage subsystem and the hydrogen refueling station subsystem.

However, these studies did not take into account the feedstock phase, which is now recognized as an important component of HSC. In the feedstock phase, hydrogen as an energy carrier can be produced from different feedstocks such as natural gas, coal, biomass, water, nuclear energy and RES, including biomass, solar and wind energy.

Additionally, the transport phase has two options such as hydrogen can be transported as a liquefied or compressed gas. Liquefied hydrogen can be transported in tank trucks by road, rail or sea, while gaseous hydrogen can be transported by land transport or high pressure pipelines.

The preliminary extraction of 85 factors from the structural model was carried out from an in-depth study of 42 selected articles. At the same time, verification of the formal and legal factors resulting from the analysis of national and European regulations was carried out. Additional factors identified were the complexity of the legal regime in the field of hydrogen technologies; public support mechanisms for H2 and RES technologies; spatial development plan for hydrogen buffer, RES facilities and storage; permits for the environment and safety, production, storage and transport of hydrogen; and the legal status of hydrogen as a fuel.


To conclude, the researchers designed a theoretical model of multi-criteria system architecture to stabilize the operation of an electric power distribution network based on a hydrogen energy buffer through certain conceptual assumptions, an in-depth study of 42 papers research studies selected from the WoS database, a preliminary extraction of 85 factors from the structural model, verification of formal and legal factors and consultation with business representatives and scientists representing technical and economic sciences.

Identifying these critical variables and factors will stabilize the operation of electric power distribution networks and improve network security, reliability and quality.


Frankowska, M., Mańkowska, M., Rabe, M., Rzeczycki, A., Szaruga, E., Structural model of power grid stabilization in green hydrogen supply chain system — conceptual assumptions, Energies, 2022, 15664.

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