Hydrogen treatment

Research into the effects of hydrogen on materials

Several metallic materials change under the influence of hydrogen. Strength and ductility decrease, cracks or even fractures can occur. In short: For many materials, hydrogen can severely shorten the service life and, in the worst case, lead to the failure of entire components. In other areas, however, the absorption of hydrogen into the substance to be treated proves extremely beneficial. For example, in the production of high-quality sintered magnets containing rare earths, the starting material in the form of cast ingots is specifically converted by hydrogen into a magnetic powder with improved grindability. The absorption and storage of hydrogen in a material is generally referred to as hydrogen embrittlement.

The Leistungszentrum-Wasserstoff Hessen not only researches the effects of hydrogen on individual metal alloys, but also investigates complete composite bodies. For components of smaller dimensions, a hydrogen reactor with a pressure range from a few mbar up to 100 bar is available for this purpose. Another hydrogen autoclave allows the investigation of samples weighing up to 50 kg, up to a maximum pressure of 10 bar H2 and temperatures of up to 500 °C.