International Meeting Advances Requirements for Hydrogen Fuel Quality
Karen Hall, Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association

ISO/TC 197 Working Group 14, which is developing an International Standard ISO 14687-3: Hydrogen Fuel – Product Specification – Part 3 – Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) Fuel Cells Applications for Stationary Appliances, met on June 27-28. CEA hosted the meeting in scenic Grenoble, France.

Technical experts representing Canada, France, Japan, the United States and the United Kingdom participated.

Hydrogen Experts Meet in Grenoble

The purpose of the meeting was to go through all of the comments received from circulation of the Committee Draft (CD). The Working Group discussed all the comments. It was determined that several require additional research or a proposal on the wording to implement the principals agreed to during the meeting.  Also, proposals relating to analytical methods will be addressed in liaison with experts who were not present. 

Here is a list of some of the key agreements made during the meeting. These points are based on the authors’ personal notes from this meeting only, and not the formal documents of the Working Group. In addition, the document is still in the Committee Draft stage. It will continue to change until sufficient consensus is reached to advance it through all the stages. As a result, the points discussed below may not represent the document at a later stage:

  1. There is no need for a separate specification for a liquid grade fuel since the hydrogen will be gaseous at the boundary point where sampling will be required.

  2. Fuel that meets the requirements of Part 2 can be used for these stationary applications. Language has to be developed to address issues such as sampling points, age of the sample, and other potential issues, but the intent is to avoid the expense of testing high quality hydrogen twice.

  3. Analytical methods should be consistent between Part 2 and Part 3 to the extent practical.

  4. The document is intended to be applicable for all methods of hydrogen production.

  5. Electrolyser manufacturers are to be consulted regarding typical oxygen levels expected in electrolyser output hydrogen. The idea is to conduct analysis to see if the current requirement of 5 ppm is reasonable. In order to define testing to identify a potentially higher maximum limit, the WG14 has suggested that guidance on typical oxygen levels in electrolyser output hydrogen would be beneficial.

  6. The issue of “boundary point” is to be clarified.

  7. Reporting requirements will be clarified.

  8. WG 14 will investigate whether standards exist which are suitable for transporting the samples.

  9. Language is to be included to make it clearer that it is not necessary to test regularly for constituencies that can not be present, based on methods used in production, storage, and distribution of the hydrogen, as well as cleanliness protocols.

The UK has offered to host the next WG 14 meeting, which may involve other experts in order to address several of the remaining comments. The desired timeframe for the meeting is the end of September to mid October, to be confirmed. 

Hydrogen and First Responders Webinar
Excerpted from the webinar registration materials

A free webinar titled “Hydrogen and First Responders” was held on June 30. 

Hydrogen presents excellent opportunities for diversifying the nation's energy portfolio. As with all new fuels and technologies, early adopters must understand its specific characteristics and associated safety aspects. This webinar provided information about hydrogen and its particular implications for the first-responder community: local and state decision makers, fire, law enforcement, and medical personal. It addressed the properties of hydrogen, its use in fuel cells and stationary power, and potential hazards. 

The webinar was organized by Virginia Clean Cities and was co-hosted by the Clean Energy States Alliance. The US Department of Energy Fuel Cell Technologies Program provided assistance and support. 

Featured Speaker: Dr. Peter Sunderland, Associate Professor, University of Maryland Department of Fire Protection Engineering.

About the Webinar Series

DOE, the Clean Energy States Alliance, and the Technology Transition Corporation co-host a series of informational webinars on various topics to help state and local leaders network, share lessons learned, and find useful information. These webinars are intended to increase knowledge of fuel cell technologies and applications among state policymakers and planners, identify best practice state hydrogen and fuel cell programs and policies, and provide information and technical assistance to state policy leaders and state renewable energy programs in the development of effective hydrogen fuel cell programs and policies.

To learn about upcoming webinars in this series, or to view webinar archives, please visit

NFPA Codes and Standards Update July 2011
Karen Hall, Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association

The NFPA Hydrogen Technologies Technical Committee met by webinar on May 17 to conduct the pre-Report on Proposals (Pre-ROP) meeting for NFPA 2: Hydrogen Technologies Code. NFPA 2 is on the Fall 2013 Revision Cycle. The formal cycle begins in January of 2012. The proposal closing date is May 25, 2012.

Several task groups were disbanded, some will continue on in the new code cycle and several new task groups were formed. Eleven (11) task groups were formed or re-organized as listed below:

  • Oversight
  • Planning and Development
  • Extract Coordination
  • Refueling
  • H2 Generation
  • Separation Distances
  • Reserved Sections
  • Explosions
  • Road Tunnels
  • Blends
  • Garages – Parking and Repair

Task Groups are not required to be made up exclusively by committee members and Technical Committee members are encouraged to draw help from those with an appropriate background and interest.

The following Task Groups were deemed to have completed their work and were therefore disbanded: Fundamentals; Fuel Cells; Stationary Applications; QC; and LH2. Maintenance on these topics will be conducted through the normal review process.

Upcoming NFPA Events

  • NFPA 55 – Comment closing date: August 30, 2011
  • NFPA 55 – Report on Comments (ROC) meeting date: Quincy, MA, October 4-6, 2011
  • NFPA 52 – Report on Proposals (ROP) Meeting: Quincy, MA during week of August 1st, 2011

International Conference on Hydrogen Safety – Reminder

The 4th International Conference on Hydrogen Safety (ICHS) 2011 will be held in San Francisco, California on September 12-14, 2011 under the auspices of the International Association for Hydrogen Safety (IA-HySafe). 

Information about the venue, technical program, and registration are available at

There will also be side meetings, such as the workshop noted in the June edition. If you are aware of side events relating to this that should be added to our calendar of meetings and events, please forward details to These will be added as they are received.