Project meeting of STEP at the site of the company ATS - Agro Trading & Solutions in Hardegsen (Photo: DBFZ)

Biogas Biofuels sector coupling | CHP Power System integration Heat

Project ID 03EI5431

Hy2Biomethane - Process integration of a trickle bed reactor for the biological methanation of hydrogen in pressurized water scrubbing-based biomethane production

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  • 01.04.2021 - 31.03.2023


Technical University Ingolstadt
Institute of new Energy Systems (InES)
Esplanade 10
85049 Ingolstadt

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Markus Goldbrunner – project leader
Telephone: +49-(0) 841 9348-3420


03EI5431B - Friedrich Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU)
03EI5431C - regineering GmbH

Associated partners

Cooperation partners



Planned results:

  • plant level: procedure, technical center plant, plant modules/system components
  • concept level: plant concept
  • data level: models/modeling, scenarios, method (analytical/process descriptive etc.)
  • market level: business model
  • publications: scientific paper (ISI, peer-reviewed)


In the future energy system, power-to-gas technology (PtG) is expected to play a key role in the field of energy storage and sector coupling. For methane production from hydrogen and carbon dioxide, biological methanation has established itself as a promising conversion pathway in addition to the catalytic reaction. Microbiological conversion is characterized by comparatively low purity requirements for the reactant gases as well as robust and load-flexible operation.
A promising approach to increase the phase transition of hydrogen in the liquid phase of biological methanation is the design of a high-pressure process in a trickle bed reactor. Another key issue in the project is the development of CO2 supply sources for the realization of PtG plants. Among the biogenic CO2 sources, biogas plants with connected gas processing and feeding into the natural gas grid (so-called biomethane plants) offer the most technically and economically favorable potential to be developed.


Within the scope of the planned project, the process engineering integration of a trickle bed reactor into the pressurized water scrubbing-based biogas upgrading is to be designed, developed and laboratory tested. The concept envisages that the CO2-loaded scrubbing solution is fed directly into the methanation reactor following CO2 separation in order to provide the CO2 required for biological methanation. In order to demonstrate the basic process engineering feasibility of the research idea and to validate the model calculations, the system configuration developed in the model will be replicated on a laboratory scale.


Technical University Ingolstadt

  • Holistic conception of the overall system
  • Combination of system configurations into overall concepts
  • Mapping of the process engineering of the system components in an overall model
  • Comparative analysis of different interconnection variants
  • Adaptation of the existing laboratory system for pressurized water scrubbing and hardware-based design of the interface with the trickle bed reactor

Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg

  • Detailed studies on the adaptive design of the trickle bed reactor to coupled use with pressurized water scrubbing-based CO2 capture
  • High-resolution numerical process simulations of the mass transfer of the reactant gas components
  • Fabrication of the reactor based on the generated reactor concept
  • Preliminary experimental investigations on the reactor to validate the detailed simulations

regineering GmbH

  • Dimensioning and control integration of the plant periphery
  • Comparison of possible reactor concepts and development and design of components
  • Economic analysis regarding the cost efficiency of the system in the context of different utilization paths
  • Implementation and programming of the required process control technology to represent a dynamic operation of the test plant while testing different operating and control strategies
  • Development of business models


Technical University Ingolstadt

  • Research, development and innovation to make plants more flexible in the context of the future power system, including system services
  • Efficient combination of bioenergy with other renewable energies or energy technologies in the energy mix
  • Optimization of bioenergy plants for fermentation, gasification and combustion; system services; market models
  • Operation of laboratory biogas plant

Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg

  • Development of trickle bed reactor
  • Process simulation of the mass transfer of the educt gas components

regineering GmbH

  • Process control technology for the representation of a dynamic operation of the experimental plant
  • Economic efficiency calculations and business model development


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