On-Board Physical Based 70 MPa Hydrogen Storage Systems

Published April 12, 2011 by SAE International in United States
On-Board Physical Based 70 MPa Hydrogen Storage Systems
Citation: Veenstra, M. and Hobein, B., "On-Board Physical Based 70 MPa Hydrogen Storage Systems," SAE Int. J. Engines 4(1):1862-1871, 2011, https://doi.org/10.4271/2011-01-1343.
Language: English


Fossil energy diversity and security along with environmental emission policies demand new energy carriers and associated technologies in the future. One of the major challenges of the automotive industry and research institutes worldwide currently is to develop and realize alternative fuel concepts for passenger cars. In line with Ford's global hydrogen vehicle program, different onboard hydrogen storage technologies are under investigation. In general, hydrogen storage methods can be categorized as either physical storage of hydrogen (i.e. compressed, liquid, or cryo-compressed) or material based hydrogen storage. Currently, automotive OEMs have only introduced hydrogen fleet vehicles that utilize physical-based hydrogen storage systems but they have recognized that hydrogen storage systems need to advance further to achieve the range associated with today's gasoline vehicle.

At Ford Motor Company, compressed gaseous hydrogen storage systems at 35 MPa (350 bar) have been deployed to a fleet of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles as well as internal combustion engine powered vehicles. The direct customer feedback from these hydrogen fleet vehicles was the need for improved driving range to be comparable with conventional vehicles. Through doubling the working pressure to 70 MPa (700 bar), the volumetric storage density of the fuel storage system significantly improves closing the performance gap of driving range. In this report, next-generation 70 MPa hydrogen storage systems are presented with regard to their overall design, component development, refueling capabilities, and verification testing on component, system as well as vehicle level. Overall, the 70 MPa hydrogen storage systems have demonstrated significant improvement in the compressed hydrogen fuel capacity facilitating the path for achieving greater than 300 miles range on fuel cell vehicles. The Ford 70 MPa hydrogen storage systems have been developed using the internal product development disciplines and have achieved the implementation milestone. The 70 MPa system designs were based on today's state-of-the-art hydrogen storage technology and have proven to provide the desired functionality and appropriate safety in particular with regard to certification and approval according to North America standards as well as European regulations.