Hydrogen Management

In the current energy and decarbonization context, hydrogen is becoming an increasingly critical utility. KBC has a systematic approach to understand your hydrogen context, optimize the existing facilities and develop your future strategy to maximize ROI.

Hydrogen renewable energy production facility
Visual MESA Hydrogen System

Hydrogen Network Analysis and Optimization

To optimize the existing and the future hydrogen network, it is crucial to consider the following aspects to make the best decisions:

  • Understand the current investment trends in oil refining and what they mean in terms of hydrogen consumption
  • Consider how conversion and circular technologies, as well as bio, waste and fossil feed type affect the hydrogen network
  • Understand the hydrogen production cost and the cost of poor hydrogen management
  • How increased energy efficiency and electrification make hydrogen management more important
  • How to make the right investments
  • How to optimize the existing facilities

Why Choose KBC?

KBC offers a unique combination of process expertise and simulation technology to understand your hydrogen context and optimize the existing and the future asset.

Process Expertise

KBC has a team of subject matter experts which cover the relevant process areas: Hydrogen Plant, Reforming, Molecular Management, Constraint Management, Hydrogen Loses and Hydrogen Recovery.


KBC has a suite of software tools to analyze and balance hydrogen systems. The Petro-SIM® simulation software is used for detailed modeling at a process unit level, and Visual MESA® is used for hydrogen network optimization, including the production and use of green hydrogen.

Real Time Optimization

Using our simulation tools, KBC can help you to continuously optimize your operations using a digitalized Hydrogen and Energy Management System, which performs site-wide real time optimization.

Project Execution Methodology – 4DS Model

Define Balance
Discover Analyse
Develop Roadmap
Deliver Implement
Sustain Optimize
Hydrogen management minimising losses

KBC uses its 4DS proven methodology for Hydrogen Management. The first step is Define: in this case it is crucial to balance the hydrogen network as a first step to understand the current operation and performance.

Hydrogen balance view

Using common sense and expertise, analyse:

  • Balance
  • Operations, yields, qualities

Using tools:

  • Process simulation
    • Equipment level
    • Plant level
    • Site level
  • Financial modeling
  • Licensor support
Opportunities to reduce hydrogen losses

KBC develops process models, which will support the identification and evaluation of opportunities according to the business context and strategic objectives:

  • Improvement and gap closure through operational changes
  • Capex projects roadmap
Sustained optimization for real time market conditions

KBC offers expert support for the implementation of the operational improvements and the evaluation of the results achieved. However, for a sustained value capture, the optimized solution needs to be updated: this solution will also change due to changing values of fuel, power, and unit operating margins.

Digitalised hydrogen and energy management system for real time optimisation

An advanced digitalized hydrogen and energy management system performs a real time optimization for the whole site:

  • Open-loop optimization generates recommendations for the Operations team
  • Close loop optimization automatically implements the optimized solution
  • Multi-period optimization can further optimize to take advantage of forecasts of changes in pricing
Hydrogen storage tanks

Hydrogen Network Optimization

Improving hydrogen management is an important part of any decarbonization strategy. In our two-part webinar series, we discuss the costs of grey, blue and green hydrogen production. We go on to explain what most refineries are missing in their hydrogen network management, how to implement a hydrogen network optimization strategy and the best tools available for that purpose.

Watch Hydrogen Network Management – Part 1

Watch Hydrogen Network Management – Part 2

A hydrogen pipeline with wind turbines and solar panel power plants in the background

Real Time Utilities Optimization Incorporating Hydrogen Supply Systems

Hydrogen management can have a significant effect on refinery utility supply. Real-time optimization of hydrogen production in conjunction with steam, power and fuels can yield significant savings opportunities for the refinery.

In order to consider the interaction of hydrogen with the fuel system, a compositional model of the fuel must be included. Solving and optimizing the energy and hydrogen balances at the same time is key to ensuring consistency with operations and constraints handling.

This paper describes how an integrated model optimizing the utilities and their interaction with a hydrogen system has been implemented in a real industrial environment. The main project steps are explained, and critical details highlighted to ensure successful use. It also presents real examples in which the cost of the site-wide utilities of a production site, i.e. steam, fuels, boiler feed water, hydrogen and electricity, are optimized with a real-time, online software system.

Download the whitepaper

Joris Mertens  - Profile Picture

Joris Mertens

Principal Consultant

Meet our expert on Blue and Green Hydrogen

"Over the years, we have optimized dozens of hydrogen networks as part of performance improvement studies for refineries and chemical plants.  However, green hydrogen, blue hydrogen, emissions and carbon intensity are new vectors that are complicating the equation and are here to stay. How do we handle these? KBC is reinforcing its legacy methodology with new tools and methodologies. For green hydrogen production we have developed electrolyser simulation and we can simulate CO2 capture for blue hydrogen production. Multi-period optimization helps to account for the variability of renewable electricity production and anticipate the impact that has on hydrogen and energy networks. Life cycle analysis data is connected to our integrated process and energy models to enable the calculation and certification of carbon intensity of hydrogen and other products produced. These tools and methodologies, combined with our consultant expertise help us to deliver high quality solutions."

More on this expert

Multi-Period Optimization Capability

See an example of how a Hybrid Power Plant uses the Visual MESA Multi-Period Optimizer to optimize green hydrogen.