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Conformable Hydrogen Storage


OUSD (R&E) CRITICAL TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Renewable Energy Generation and Storage; Biotechnology TOPIC OBJECTIVE: The goal of this topic is to develop conformable hydrogen storage vessels that can store hydrogen at 700 bar (10,000 psi). TOPIC DESCRIPTION: As the Army moves towards electrifying its vehicle fleet, storing enough energy onboard vehicles to match or exceed their current performance is a challenge. While batteries have made great strides in recent decades, they remain heavy and cumbersome. A potential solution for heavy vehicles is hydrogen fuel cells. Fuel cells can provide the benefits of electrification (silent mobility, silent watch, export power, high torque on demand, etc.) while maintaining current vehicle range and allowing for refueling in the same amount of time as liquid fuels. One drawback of hydrogen fuel cells is storage of the hydrogen itself. Current solutions are bulky composite overwrapped pressure vessels (COPVs) that take up significant space. A potential solution is conformable tanks that can be designed to fit unusually shaped space claims, allowing for more energy to be stored in containers, on vehicles, or in other energy storage use cases. This technology has been developed and validated to 350 bar (5,000 psi) applications, but further work is required to meet the goal of 700 bar operating pressures. Evaluation of these tanks under military ballistic testing also revealed some potential areas of improvement for this technology. It is important to develop this technology as it will enable high energy density storage that can be refilled as quickly as current liquid fuels while enabling electrification technologies and reducing thermal and acoustic footprints for energy generation systems. Note: This technology uses emerging manufacturing techniques along with a unique design that allows for the hydrogen storage tank to fit the shape of any space claim, utilizing a higher percentage of empty space than the current state of the art. The materials used are also lower cost and have been optimized to meet the demanding requirements for vehicle use. PHASE I: This is a Direct to Phase II topic. To justify a Direct to Phase 2, the company should provide data showing a tank system made up of multiple segments (more than one) capable of 350 bar operations. At minimum, there should be data demonstrating the system can comply with proof testing and burst testing outlined in CSA/ANSI HGV 2. DIRECT TO PHASE II: Design a 700-bar system for vehicle use that qualifies applicable to HGV 2 standards identified by both TPOC and contractor. Demonstrate the performance of the system on an applicable vehicle system. Potential Phase II Sequential and Enhancement: Scale up the design of the 700-bar system for larger storage quantities. Undergo ballistic testing of the system with military specific ballistic threats. Incorporate lessons learned from previous testing and develop 700 bar systems for specific military vehicle applications. PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: There is a multitude of industries that would benefit from improved hydrogen storage, with new use cases, like P2G tech, that will rely on hydrogen storage technology for operation. Efficient hydrogen storage will become a necessity as various industries, including transportation, metal refining, and chemical manufacturing, increase their hydrogen usage. The proposed technology has potential use within the Army Small Business Innovation Research Program as well as other Army Research Centers and acquisition programs.   KEYWORDS: Hydrogen; Storage; fuel; battlespace; tank; refuel point; electrification   REFERENCES:  1. Lithium Ion Battery, Clean Energy Institute,‐of‐solar/battery‐technology/ 2. Physical Hydrogen Storage,‐hydrogen‐storage 3. Conformable Hydrogen Pressure Vessel, 4. Innovative pressurized hydrogen storage for integrated vehicle structures using composites, 5.‐pressurized‐hydrogen‐storage‐for‐integrated‐vehicle‐structures‐using‐composites 6. Materials challenges to enable hydrogen deployment at scale by 2050,‐Hydrogen‐Conformable‐Tanks-Summary.pdf&psig=AOvVaw1WyXFqJZkfpV3vNpk4zMmc&ust=1671044241186277
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