Continuing the four-part Stocking Filler series is GASVESSEL who told gasworld that if they could gift someone just one innovation this year it would be its ultra-high volume 300 bar pressure vessel, FRACO.

“The FRACO has unique combination of multiple benefits: it is big, light and versatile as it is suitable for marine, rail and road transport,” Oksana Pilatova, Business Development Director at Triple A Tech GmbH, told gasworld.

“It achieves great balance between capacity of transported gas, container weight, costs and scalability.”

A Type 3 carbon fibre composite ultra-high volume 300 bar pressure vessel, the FRACO can be used to transport a variety of compressed industrial gases, including hydrogen.

“Our FRACO pressure vessel diameter is 2.4m with 12m length and one cylinder per 40ft container, while the competition has minimum of four cylinders per 40ft container, but sometimes up to 30 cylinders.”

“The solution maximises the full useful space in the container and can transport 30% more volume in a standard 40Ft container compared to competitive products,” Pilatova said.

Increasing safety, reliability and decreases capital, operational and maintenance costs, the FRACO cylinder does not require multiple connection points. Further to that, the vessel avoids challenging connection between plastic liner material and metal neck as the same metal is used for both the liner and hose.

“Our solution minimises risk of gas leakage, removes the problem in handling temperature delta during highspeed gas loading – unloading process and ensures longevity of the cylinders even after many years of operation.”

“An additional advantage of the FRACO is its versatility as the same FRACO can be used for CNG and Hydrogen. The liner material we use has a multi-decade hydrogen compatibility proven history in the nuclear power plants applications with no embrittlement effect. So, if today you need to transport CNG and you invested into FRACO containers, tomorrow you can continue to use them to transport hydrogen.”

How it’s made

“The core patented innovation starts with the production of metal liner with very precise thin (5mm) walls with a very high manufacturing precision (+/- 0,1 mm on the liner thickness,” added Giovanni Fratti, CEO of CNGV d.o.o.

“Additional innovation is in the composite production process. This is very big (2,4m X 12m) structure and the filament winding process requires a lot of know-how which is based on multi-decade experience of our technical team.”

“The demonstration of the innovation was supported by EU Commission and first real-life prototypes were produced and tested in the Horizon 2020 sponsored GasVessel Project (EU Grant Agreement N 723030).”

Speaking to gasworld, Pilatova and  Fratti said the initial idea was focused on very big pressure vessels as an in-build system in specially designed CNG ships and has continued to be developed since.