Risk Associated with the Use of Barriers in Hydrogen Refueling Stations
Jeffrey L. LaChance, Jesse Phillips and William Houf, Sandia National Laboratories

Separation distances are used in hydrogen refueling stations to protect people, structures, and equipment from the consequences of accidental hydrogen releases. Specifically, hydrogen jet flames resulting from ignition of unintended releases can be extensive in length and pose significant radiation and impingement hazards. Depending on the leak diameter and source pressure, the resulting separation distances can be unacceptably large. One possible mitigation strategy to reduce exposure to jet flames is to incorporate barriers around hydrogen storage, process piping, and delivery equipment. The risk associated with the use of barriers at hydrogen refueling stations has been evaluated using experimental and modeling information developed at Sandia National Laboratories to characterize the effectiveness of barrier walls to reduce hazards. The effect of barriers on the risk from different types of hazards including direct flame contact, radiation heat fluxes, and overpressures associated with delayed hydrogen ignition was quantified and used to identify potential reductions in separation distances in hydrogen refueling stations. The results indicate that the proper design of the barriers can reduce the overall risk associated with hydrogen releases. Thus, in addition to identifying potential reductions in separation distances, it is envisioned that the results of the barrier risk analysis will be used to help establish risk-informed barrier design requirements for use in hydrogen codes and standards.

DOE Gives C&S Awards
Karen Hall, National Hydrogen Association

The U.S. Department of Energy recently gave out awards to two individuals who have proven invaluable in the field of hydrogen safety, codes and standards.

Glenn Scheffler
For more years than he probably would like to recall, Glenn Scheffler has been an indispensable technical resource and champion in the hydrogen and fuel cell safety, codes and standards community. With invaluable technical expertise in fuel cell technology engineering and development, including serving as Chief Engineer responsible for product reliability and safety at UTC Power and as Manager of ONSI Engineering for United Technologies, Glenn has applied this expertise and devotion to product safety in service of numerous technical committees and working groups developing codes and standards for hydrogen and fuel cell technologies. For example, Glenn serves as Chair of the Safety Working Group and Vice-Chair of the Fuel Cell Vehicle Committee for the SAE. Under his guidance, SAE developed and recently published J2579, performance-based requirements for verification of design prototype and production of hydrogen storage and handling systems for hydrogen vehicles, which, among other things, is dramatically changing and improving storage tank testing protocols in other countries and is now being incorporated under Global Technical Regulations for hydrogen vehicle systems. Glenn also chairs the U.S. Technical Advisory Groups for both ISO TC197 (Hydrogen Technologies) and IEC TC22/SC21 (Electrically Propelled Road Vehicles) and serves as a technical resource for numerous other important standards and codes development and coordination activities. The outstanding progress that the hydrogen and fuel cell codes and standards community has made over the past decade owes much to service and dedication of experts and champions like Glenn Scheffler. 

Chris Sloane
Dr. Chris Sloane is a force of her own in the hydrogen and fuel cell technical community and a highly effective advocate for the incorporation of science and performance-based requirements in regulations, codes and standards. Chris has championed this approach in all critical domestic and international forums, and the codes and standards community owes much to her tireless effort that is based on impeccable technical credentials and experience. Chris has served as Director of Environmental Policy and Programs for General Motors Corporation, responsible for global climate issues and for mobile emission issues involving advanced technology vehicles, including hybrid-electric, fuel cell, and advanced compression-ignition vehicles. Chris also served as Chief Technologist for the Partnership for a New Generation of Vehicles (PNGV) where she was responsible for guiding and implementing the development of energy conversion and materials technologies for use in the Precept, GM's 80 mile-per-gallon 5-passenger concept car. More recently, Chris has served as an invaluable technical resource for the Department of Energy in the on-going development of Global Technical Regulations (GTR) for hydrogen vehicle systems. Chris personifies the all too rare combination of technical expertise and a common sense approach to problem solving that characterizes her devotion and service to the safety of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies. 


ICHE C&S Conference Announced
Karen Hall, National Hydrogen Association

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). The conference will be hosted by Sandia National Laboratories and will improve public awareness and trust in hydrogen technologies by communicating a better understanding of both the hazards and risks associated with hydrogen and their management. Since ICHS 2011 will focus on safety issues and measures to encourage more extensive use of hydrogen-based technologies, its contents will be different from other hydrogen conferences. 

University of Ulster to Provide Online Course

The University of Ulster offers a MSc in Hydrogen Safety Engineering, delivered through Distance Learning (i.e. online) and via face-to-face block release since 2007. Next academic year 2010/2011 a new module "Hydrogen Safety Technologies" will enforce this World's first postgraduate course in hydrogen safety. 

The next course intake will be on 20th September 2010. Applications for a place on the course may be submitted on-line via:https://oa1.ulster.ac.uk/PROD/bwskalog.P_DispLoginNon

Full details about the course can be found at:http://prospectus.ulster.ac.uk/course/?id=7761 or by contacting the Course Director, Dr Arief Dahoe and the teaching team at MSc-HSE@ulster.ac.uk