Hydrogen filling station

The project involved the design, build and commissioning of an experimental facilty to provide fuel in liquid hydrogen form for road vehicles, based near the test track of a major vehicle manufacturer in England.

We were tasked with providing the control and instrumentation of the whole supply chain of hydrogen coming out of an electrolyser, through the various stages of pressurization up to the dispensing point.  Because of the flammability of the fuel chosen, we adopted a policy of using Intrinsically Safe (IS) instrumentation and controls with suitable isolated barriers for additional protection and peace of mind.

The pressure measured ranged between 2Bar (production side) all the way up to 500Bar (delivery side).

A number of safety interlocks were implimented, while a PC-based SCADA system provided facilities for easy configuration, non-safety related interlocks and controls as well as recording all measured parameters and alarm events.

Additional safety features provided: 'dead-mans' handle' for the fuelling hose; electronic tag to authorise the dispensing of fuel.

The choice of instrumentation throuhgout was an interesting exercise in itself because of the very small size of the hydrogen atoms.