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SAE’s highest technical safety award goes to hydrogen fueling paper

At the Awards Ceremony at the SAE 2016 Government/Industry Meeting, SAE International honored the recipients of the Ralph H. Isbrandt Automotive Safety Engineering Award, including the lead author, Jesse Schneider, (BMW); along with co-authors Jihyun Shim (Hyundai); Graham Meadows (IMPCO); Steven R. Mathison (Honda); Michael J. Veenstra (Ford); Rainer Immel (Opel); Morten Wistoft-Ibsen (H2 Logic); Manfred Greisel (Wenger Engineering); Spencer Quong (SQI); Timothy McGuire (MB RDNA); and Peter Potzel (Daimler).

The Ralph Isbrandt Award annually recognizes the author(s) delivering the most outstanding paper at an SAE Society or section meeting on the subject of automotive safety engineering. The 2016 Ralph Isbrandt award recognizes the advancement to SAE literature of the recipients’ SAE World Congress Technical Paper on Hydrogen Fueling, “Validation and Sensitivity Studies for SAE J2601, the Light Duty Vehicle Hydrogen Fueling Standard” (SAE 2014-01-1990). (Earlier post.)

To support international standardization of hydrogen fueling of Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle, multiple automakers released their onboard and laboratory data into one report. This industry-led effort combined testing conducted in three continents in both laboratory settings as well as public hydrogen fueling stations with sensitivity studies. These “extreme case simulations” evaluated the limits of hydrogen fueling in relation to vehicle and station designs in order to give confidence to the implementation of the SAE J2601 standard.

Hydrogen is now emerging as an alternative fuel and they are starting to build infrastructure in places such as California, Europe and Japan. This new commercial hydrogen fueling has the ability to have “same-as-today’s” 5-minute fueling and at the same time enables a driving range similar to conventional vehicles at 300 miles (500 km). This technical paper (SAE 2014-01-1990)—recognized today—documents more than a decade worth of testing and simulation to confirm the hydrogen fueling protocols targets and limits set forth by the SAE J2601 protocol. Validating safety for commercial hydrogen fueling protocol is a high priority as well as confirming its performance—and that is what we did.

—Jesse Schneider

Obtaining extended driving ranges in FCEVs with hydrogen fueling is accomplished by compressing hydrogen to 70MPa (or H70). The speed of hydrogen fueling is directly related to the amount of cooling that the dispenser allows, to offset the heat of compression. Therefore, a H70-T40 fueling dispenser enables this fast-fueling by providing hydrogen fuel at -40 ˚C to the fuel cell vehicle.

The figures below show an example of fueling testing in the laboratory (at Powertech in Canada) and in the field at a Shell Station with H2Logic Technology in Denmark. The data confirms that the fueling protocol does not exceed the temperature, pressure or density limits under extreme and ambient conditions. At the same time, it shows a high degree of State of Charge (SOC), for instance between 95-100% with communications fueling.

Laboratory fueling testing with automaker tanks and dispenser fueling equipment under extreme temperature fueling conditions. Click to enlarge.


Field testing at the H2Logic station at Shell fueling site. Click to enlarge.


Summary of field test results for fueling time and resulting SOC. Click to enlarge.

SAE J2601 is referenced in the upcoming international Standard ISO TS 19880-1 as well as the North American CSA 4.3 Standard. This data (documented and evaluated in the SAE report 2014-01-1990) has also been posted on the website for free download in the public domain.


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