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Hydrogen storage vessels in focus at new prototyping hub
© University of Sheffield

Hydrogen storage vessels in focus at new prototyping hub

A UK-based industrial technology consortium wants to accelerate the design and manufacture of prototype hydrogen storage vessels to improve solutions for transportation sectors as they look to achieve zero emissions.

Formed of the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC), Oxford Advanced Surfaces, Xcience and SET Europe, the consortium today (Jan 11) unveiled plans for a Hydrogen Storage Prototyping Hub (HSPH) to home the development of the vessels.

An independent, open-access resource for innovators and industrial end-users, the site will undoubtably see various technological breakthroughs that could change the future of hydrogen storage.

Dr Martin Kemp, Technical Director of Xcience, which is spearheading the initiative, said, “We believe that improved mobile storage is a crucial technology area to enable future hydrogen vehicles, and access to a state-of-the-art prototyping service will help bring the latest storage technology to vehicle design.”

Stuart Dawson, Chief Engineer for Hydrogen at the University of Sheffield AMRC, added, “Hydrogen propulsion, whether it’s performed via fuel cells or combustion, has an essential role to play in the decarbonisation of transport, particularly for heavier, longer range and higher duty cycle applications.

“The AMRC is delighted to be part of the HSPH consortium where we can contribute our composites manufacturing expertise towards developing safe, lightweight, conformal and affordable hydrogen storage tanks to help accelerate the adoption of zero emission hydrogen propulsion systems.”

Already, research undertaken by the consortium, which has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to progress the hub, has been supported by the Advanced Propulsion Centre’s Automotive Transformation Fund (ATF).

Jon-Paul Griffiths, Chief Technology Officer and founder of Oxford Advanced Surfaces (OAS), added, “We believe that the ability to prototype hydrogen storage vessels will accelerate the development and adoption of hydrogen fuelled vehicles.”

Anselmo Gomes, Head of Engineering and Research and Development at SET Europe, concluded, “The drive to net zero has revolutionised the automotive industry. Thus far, the main focus has been on battery powered drive systems. However, we believe that hydrogen also has a role, and that this role is yet to be exploited. This being true, we believe that our technology can help develop the solution for storing hydrogen on any future vehicles.”

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