Scientists create new hydrogen fuel safety app

Sep 16, 2013 by Tom Rickey
Hydrogen Tools.

Engineers and scientists at the U.S. Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have developed an app that focuses on hydrogen safety.

The Hydrogen Tools app, created with the support of DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, comes at a time when the use of fuel cells is growing. Fuel cells generate electricity by driving using hydrogen and air, producing power with dramatically reduced emissions compared to traditional hydrocarbon-based fuels. The only are heat and water.

Nick Barilo, the PNNL project manager who led the team, said fuel cells are becoming more common in a variety of applications—as back-up energy sources in buildings, in vehicles, and in warehouses, where they are often used to power forklifts.

"In addition to being a clean energy option, fuel cells can offer some real advantages in certain applications," said Barilo. "Last year during Hurricane Sandy, for instance, that relied on a as a backup energy source continued to work throughout the storm, with just a few exceptions, even in areas where relying on other power sources were rendered inoperable.

"With hydrogen being deployed in a greater number of applications, it's the perfect time to make a safety tool like this app broadly available. Many people are unfamiliar with the technology, and this app is intended to make the information they need available at their fingertips."

Hydrogen Tools incorporate a variety of resources and web-based content to help those involved in designing, approving or using systems and facilities. It includes information about ventilation of hydrogen, safe distances and pressures for storing hydrogen, and best practices for safely handling hydrogen.

The tool was developed with funding from DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, which accelerates development and facilitates deployment of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies and market-based solutions that strengthen U.S. energy security, environmental quality and economic vitality.

The app is being unveiled this week at the 5th International Conference on Hydrogen Safety in Brussels and is available for free download through the Apple App Store.

Explore further: Indonesia passes law to tap volcano power

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Charge your mobile phone with formic acid?

May 27, 2013

(Phys.org) —Surprisingly the answer is yes. With the technology of today it is possible to use environmental friendly formic acid in fuel cell powering your mobile phone or laptop. Physicist Florian Nitze, ...

Increasing efficiency of hydrogen production from green algae

Apr 15, 2013

New research results from Uppsala University, Sweden, instill hope of efficient hydrogen production with green algae being possible in the future, despite the prevailing scepticism based on previous research. The study, which ...

Lab drives toward the future with fuel cell EVs

Jun 25, 2013

Efforts currently underway at the Energy Department's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) are contributing to rapid progress in the research, development and testing of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies.

New method for producing clean hydrogen

May 21, 2013

Duke University engineers have developed a novel method for producing clean hydrogen, which could prove essential to weaning society off of fossil fuels and their environmental implications.

Recommended for you

Indonesia passes law to tap volcano power

Aug 26, 2014

The Indonesian parliament on Tuesday passed a long-awaited law to bolster the geothermal energy industry and tap the power of the vast archipelago's scores of volcanoes.

Expert calls for nuke plant closure (Update)

Aug 25, 2014

A senior federal nuclear expert is urging regulators to shut down California's last operating nuclear plant until they can determine whether the facility's twin reactors can withstand powerful shaking from ...

Image: Testing electric propulsion

Aug 20, 2014

On Aug. 19, National Aviation Day, a lot of people are reflecting on how far aviation has come in the last century. Could this be the future – a plane with many electric motors that can hover like a helicopter ...

Where's the real value in Tesla's patent pledge?

Aug 20, 2014

With the much-anticipated arrival next month of electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla's Model S to Australian shores, it's a good time to revisit Tesla's pledge to freely share patents. ...

User comments : 0