NFPA 2 Draft now Available for Review

By Karen Quackenbush, FCHEA

A draft of NFPA 2, Hydrogen Technologies Code - 2020 edition, has been posted under the Next Edition tab on the NFPA website at

This Second Draft Report is available for public review, and is open to filing a Notice of Intent to Make a Motion (NITMAM), until April 29, 2019.  A NITMAM is amending motion submitted to be heard by the NFPA Membership for consideration and debate at the NFPA Technical Meeting.  These motions are attempts to change the resulting final Standard from the Committee’s recommendations published as the Second Draft.

The detailed rules regarding amending motions that can be made and who can make them are set forth in NFPA’s Regulations and NFPA Technical Meeting Convention Rules.  Please consult and be familiar with these if you wish to bring an issue before the membership at an NFPA Technical Meeting. For more information, please see

If no NITMAMs are received, the NFPA Standards Council will issue the standard on June 7, 2019 as a Consent Standard. Once published and posted, the opportunity for public review and comment will begin again for the next edition.

HyLaw EU Workshop Presentations Now Available

by Karen Quackenbush, FCHEA

A HyLAW EU workshop was held on December 6, 2018. The workshop aimed to shed some light on the regulatory and administrative barriers faced by hydrogen technologies.  Hydrogen Europe hopes that their work in the future will contribute to reducing and gradually eliminating these barriers.

The presentations by the HyLAW consortium, as well as some of the presentations of industry speakers, are available online:

Fuel cell vehicles: New sensor system safeguards fuel quality at hydrogen filling stations

(reprinted from Saarland University)

Fuel cell vehicles need hydrogen to operate, but that hydrogen has to be free of any contaminants that could damage the fuel cell. Professor Andreas Schütze and his research team at Saarland University are collaborating with research partners to develop a sensor system that can provide continuous in situ monitoring of hydrogen quality at hydrogen fuelling stations. The infrared measuring cell will be installed inside the hydrogen filling station and will have to operate under very challenging conditions. The sensor system has to work reliably, despite the extremely high pressures and short refuelling times. The new sensor system will be undergoing operational trials this autumn. The research team from Saarbrücken will be at this year's Hannover Messe starting 1 April, where they will be showcasing their high-pressure test rig at the Saarland Research and Innovation Stand (Hall 2, Stand B46).

Cars don't like it if they are forced to run on low-quality or low-purity fuels. And the same is no less true of vehicles powered by fuel-cell technology. The driver of a fuel cell vehicle fills up with hydrogen, rather than a fossil-based fuel, but even hydrogen can be contaminated. Impurities such as sulfur-containing compounds, ammonia or hydrocarbons can all contaminate the hydrogen during the production process, during transportation to the hydrogen station or during the refilling process. And that can make driving a lot less pleasurable. 'Contaminants can actually poison the fuel cell,' explains sensor expert Professor Andreas Schütze from Saarland University. Even low levels of impurities can damage the fuel cell membranes. As a result, the fuel cell produces less electricity, power output is reduced and the vehicle travels shorter distances. In the worst case, the fuel cell will be irreversibly damaged and the car will simply stop running.

To stop things ever getting that far, Schütze and his team have been working with research partners to develop technology that ensures that the fuel cell is only fed with high purity hydrogen, thereby extending the service life of the fuel cell. Project partners include the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE and Hydac Electronic GmbH.

Up until now, the purity of the hydrogen was determined by analysing samples in a laboratory. At Saarland University and at Zema - Center for Mechatronics and Automation Technology in Saarbrücken, researchers are working on a sensor system that continuously monitors the quality of the hydrogen during the refuelling process. 'The challenge is twofold: measuring at the required level of precision and coping with the conditions under which the sensor system needs to operate,' says Schütze. The refuelling process uses hydrogen pressures of 700 to 900 bar and lasts less than three minutes.

The research team is therefore developing an infrared measuring cell that can measure reliably and accurately under these extreme conditions. The very high pressures to which their sensors are exposed are in fact utilized by the team to further improve the sensitivity of their process. Andreas Schütze and his research team have already produced marketable measuring cells for monitoring the quality of oils and other liquids. But the pressures that the researchers are now having to deal with mean that they are in uncharted territory. 'Up until now, no one has made measurements of this type at pressures this high. Normally, these sorts of measurements are done at pressures of no more than 40 or 50 bar,' says Andreas Schütze. The measuring cell for the odourless gas H2 is installed inside the hydrogen fuelling station and the hydrogen fuel flows through a small tube. 'We illuminate the gas passing through the tube with light from an infrared source and we collect the light passing out on the opposite side of the tube. If there has been a change in the chemical composition of the gas, the infrared spectrum will change accordingly. This allows us to detect the presence of unwanted additives or contaminants,' explains Professor Schütze.

Members of his research team are currently conducting experiments and are assigning particular infrared absorption signals to the various contaminants. They are also determining which wavelengths of the infrared spectrum are most suitable for the measurements and are calibrating the system. These important preparatory stages need to be completed before this autumn, when the sensor system will be installed in a hydrogen refuelling station for operational trials. 'One of the questions we're studying at the moment is whether and how the intensity of the infrared spectrum we measure changes with pressure. The sensor system has to be able to reliably detect a range of contaminants at concentration levels significantly below what we find in oils,' explains Marco Schott, a doctoral student working on the hydrogen measuring cell.

The project is being supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research through a grant worth €2.5 million (approximately 2.8 million dollars).


Prof. Dr. Andreas Schütze, Email:

Partner Fraunhofer ISE, Christopher Voglstätter; Email:

Measurement Technology Lab, Saarland University, Saarbrücken, Germany and Center for Mechatronics and Automation Technology (ZeMA):

South Korea loosens hydrogen regulation

(Reprinted from

The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy has shared an article produced by The Diplomat, an international current-affairs magazine for the Asia-Pacific region, detailing further plans to develop a hydrogen (H2)-based economy in South Korea by deregulating H2 laws.

On the 17th January 2019, ambitious plans to have 80,000 H2-powered fuel cell vehicles on South Korea’s roads by 2022 were unveiled by President Moon Jae-in at a government-led event in the southeastern city of Ulsan 

South Korea unveils hydrogen economy plan

In South Korea, there are currently only 15 refuelling stations for FCEVs, though the government is looking to add 71 this year. In contrast, there are nearly 25,000 charging stations for electric vehicles across the US and Canada.

To grow the number of refuelling stations in South Korea, the government plans to loosen regulations by creating a regulatory sandbox that will allow domestic producers to experiment with new technologies without the concern of being burdened by regulations.

Under the current law, building H2-charging stations in such areas is not allowed due to many regulations related to residential areas, commercial areas and cultural assets. With the regulatory sandbox, the related infrastructure can be installed without revising laws.

Domestically, the plan has backing from Hyundai and the city of Ulsan. Prior to Moon’s remarks, Hyundai had already set a goal of producing 500,000 FCEVs annually by 2030, and Ulsan had set the goal of becoming a leading centre for the H2 economy. By 2030 it plans to have 40% of city buses run on H2 fuel cells (the first started this year), add 60 H2 refilling stations, and have 15% of personal vehicles run on H2.

UAE drafts technical regulation for hydrogen fuel-powered vehicles

(Reprinted from

Esma's regulation makes UAE first in the GCC to complete guidelines for environment-friendly, vapour-emitting cars

by Ranju Warrier, 10 Mar 2019

Emirates Authority for Standardisation and Metrology (Esma) has formulated a technical regulation for hydrogen cell vehicles that emit water vapour, making the UAE the first in the GCC to create legislation for such environment-friendly units. 

Demonstrating support for the GCC nation’s post-oil era strategy, the UAE's legislative effort has been initiated at three levels, Abdullah Al Maeeni, Esma's director general, said according to state news agency, Wam.

The process firstly included the adoption of environment-friendly vehicles, followed up the uptake of electric vehicles (EVs). Zero-emission vehicles, such as hydrogen-powered units, are the latest initiative in Esma's push towards sustainable mobility. 

Esma's backing for hydrogen-powered vehicles started with cylinder testing, checking the types of storage tanks and metals being used, tracking valve safety.

"The system will determine the requirements for cutting other parts connected to the gas system, as well as the need for these parts to be suitable for use with gases and bear pressure from the cylinder,'' Al Maeeni said.

Al Maeeni said he was hopeful that more vehicle manufactures will shift to hydrogen-cell vehicles in the future due to their benefits such as cutting carbon dioxide emissions, quick refilling time, and mileage of 500-650km through the hydrogen tank. 

Hydrogen power is steadily finding takers in the GCC. In February 2019, the region’s first green hydrogen energy facility was unveiled within Dubai’s Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park (MBR Solar Park).

When it is complete, the facility will generate hydrogen energy to power fuel-cell vehicles for the 50km distance between MBR Solar Park and Expo 2020 Dubai’s site.

The 2019 Fuel Cell Seminar & Energy Exposition Call for Abstracts is Open!

Showcase your Research, Progress, Plans, and Products to hundreds of attendees!

The Call for Abstracts for the 2019 Fuel Cell Seminar & Energy Exposition (FCS&EE) is open and accepting submissions for oral and poster presentations! 

Whether you are involved in fuel cell, hydrogen, or component research and technical development, or focused on moving the industry forward through regulatory work, deployments, partnerships, strategy, or stakeholder outreach, the FCS&EE is the perfect venue to reach a large international and influential audience.

Abstracts are due by May 31!

View the full Topics and Sub-topics list at  If you would like to present on a topic area that is not reflected, please contact

Registration is also now open for Exhibitors and Attendees.  Booth space is going fast, so visit us online at and reserve your spot on the Expo floor today!

Don't forget to book your room at the reduced rate at the Renaissance Long Beach at