Past RD&D Accomplishments

Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence (HSECoE) has made much progress during the past years. These accomplishments were the result of intense inter-organizational communication and interfacing through the existing Technology Area Lead organization for HSECoE.

Major Advances Through HSECoE

The "System Architect" champions, the most promising system for each of the storage material classed for further testing and evaluation, is one of the major accomplishments made by HSECoE. In that role, the System Architect follows the technical progress of each storage system and continually assesses the system's ability to meet or exceed the DOEs performance target. The System Architect has taken a lead role in the design, building, evaluation and decommissioning of each prototype system. A separate Architect System is assigned to each of the three classes of storage systems (Metal Hydride, Absorbent Hydride and Chemical Hydride). This "matrix" approach has provided HSECoE access to a broad class of technical expertise through their Technology Area Teams as well as the project focus and technical coordination, which is provided by the individual System Architects.

Below are more of the technical accomplishments achieved through HSECoE. For more information, review past HSECoE Fuel Cell Annual Technical Progress Reports.

  1. Westman M P, Chun J, Choi YJ, Ronnebro E 2016. "Materials Engineering and Scale Up of Fluid Phase Chemical Hydrogen Storage for Automotive Applications" Energy and Fuels 30(1):560-569. 10.1021/acs.energyfuels.5b01975
  2. Choi YJ, Westman M P, Karkamkar A J, Chun J, Ronnebro E 2015. "Synthesis and Engineering Materials Properties of Fluid Phase Chemical Hydrogen Storage Materials for Automotive Applications" Energy and Fuels 29(10):6695-6703. 10.1021/acs.energyfuels.5b01307
  3. Semelsberger T A, Brooks K P, 2015. "Chemical hydrogen storage material property guidelines for automotive applications" Journal of Power Sources. Volume 279, April 2015, Pages 593-609
  4. Brooks K P, Semelsberger T A, Simmons K L, van Hassel B, 2014. "Slurry-based chemical hydrogen storage systems for automotive fuel cell applications" Journal of Power Sources. Volume 268, December 2014, Pages 950-959
  5. Brooks K P, Pires R P, Simmons K L, 2014. "Development and validation of a slurry model for chemical hydrogen storage in fuel cell vehicle applications" Journal of Power Sources. Volume 271, December 2014, Pages 504-515
  6. Choi YJ ,Ronnebro E ,Rassat S D,Karkamkar A J,Maupin G D,Holladay J D,Simmons K L,Brooks K P 2014. "Kinetics Study of Solid Ammonia Borane Hydrogen Release - Modeling and Experimental Validation for Chemical Hydrogen Storage" Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics. PCCP 16(17):7959-7968. 10.1039/C3CP55280B Abstract
  7. "Systems Modeling, Simulation and Material Operating Requirements for Chemical Hydride Based Hydrogen Storage", Devarakonda, M., Brooks, K.P., Rassat, S., and Ronnebro, E., Int Journal of Hydrogen Energy. Volume 37, 2012, Pages 2779-2793
  8. Maruthi D N, Brooks K P, Ronnebro E, Rassat S C, Holladay J D, 2012. "Chemical Hydrides for Hydrogen Storage in Fuel Cell Applications" SAE World Congress and Exhibition, April 24-26, 2012
  9. Brooks K, Devarakonda M, Holladay J, 2011."Systems Modeling of Chemical Hydride Hydrogen Storage Materials for Fuel Cell Applications" Journal of Fuel Cell Science and Technology. Volume 8, Issue 6, 2011
  10. "Dynamic Modeling and Simulation Based Analysis of an Ammonia Borane (AB) Reactor System for Hydrogen Storage", Devarakonda, M., Holladay, J., Brooks, K.P., Rassat, S., and Herling, D., ECS Transactions, 33(1), pp. 1959-1972, 2010.
  11. "Systems Modeling of Ammonia Borane Bead Reactor for Off-Board Regenerable Hydrogen Storage in PEM Fuel Cell Applications", Brooks, K.P., Devarakonda, M., Rassat, S., King, D.A., and Herling, D., Proceedings of ASME 2010 Eighth Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology Conference, Volume 1, ISBN: 978-0-7918-4404-5 pp. 729-734, 2010.
  12. "Increased volumetric hydrogen uptake of MOF-5 by powder densification", J. Purewal, D. Liu, J. Yang, A. Sudik, D. J. Siegel, S. Maurer, U. Mueller, Int. J. Hydrogen Energy, 2011 (in press)
  13. "Engineering Improvement of NaAlH4 System", B.A. van Hassel, D. Mosher, J.M. Pasini, M. Gorbounov, J. Holowczak, X. Tang, R. Brown, B. Laube and L. Pryor, Int. J. Hydrogen Energy (in press)
  14. J.M. Pasini, B.A. van Hassel, D.A. Mosher, and M.J. Veenstra (2012), "System modeling methodology and analyses for materials-based hydrogen storage." Int. J. Hydrogen Energy 37, pp. 2874-2884.
  15. M. Thornton, J. Cosgrove, M.J. Veenstra, and J.M. Pasini (2012), "Development of a vehicle-level simulation model for evaluating the trade-off between various advanced on-board hydrogen storage technologies for fuel cell vehicles", 2012 SAE World Congress, Detroit.
  16. Pasini, Jose Miguel, Claudio Corgnale, Bart A. van Hassel, Theodore Motyka, Sudarshan Kumar, and Kevin L. Simmons. "Metal hydride material requirements for automotive hydrogen storage systems." Int. J. Hydrogen Energy 38 (2013): 9755-9765.
  17. Pukrushpan, J. T., H. Peng, and A. G. Stefanopoulou. "Control-oriented modeling and analysis for automotive fuel cell systems." J. Dyn. Sys. Meas. Control 126 (2004): 14-25.
  18. Veenstra, M., and B. Hobein. "On-board physical based 70MPa hydrogen storage systems." SAE Int. J. Engines, 2011: 1862-1871.
  19. "Sensitivity study of alanate hydride storage system", M. Bhouri, J. Goyette, B. J. Hardy, D. L. Anton., International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 36 (2011) 621-633.
  20. "Evaluation of Acceptability Envelope for Materials-Based H2 Storage Systems", C. Corgnale, B. Hardy, D. Tamburello, S. Garrison and D. Anton, Int J Hydrogen Energy (in press)
  21. "Automatic Optimization of Metal Hydride Storage Tanks and Novel Designs", S. Garrison, M. Gorbounov, D. Tamburello, B. Hardy, C. Corgnale, D. Mosher and D. Anton, Int. J. Hydrogen Energy (in press)
  22. "System Simulation Models for High-Pressure Metal Hydride Hydrogen Storage Systems", Raju M., Ortmann JP, Kumar S., Int J Hydrogen Energy 2010; 35: 8742- 54.
  23. "System Simulation Modeling and Heat Transfer in Sodium Alanate based Hydrogen Storage Systems", Raju M. and Kumar S., Int J Hydrogen Energy 2011; 1578-1591.
  24. "Modeling of Adsorbent Based Hydrogen Storage Systems", Hardy B, Corgnale C, Chahine R, Richard M-A, Tamburello D, Garrison S, Cossement D, Anton D., Int J Hydrogen Energy (in press)

Completed the following modeling tasks:

  • Baseline fuel cell power plant models with physical storage fuel sources
  • Finite element models on metal hydrides and adsorbent system
  • Initial metal hydride hydrogen storage system models; includes various configurations of pressure vessels, buffer tanks, hybridization schemes, pumps and heat exchangers
  • Initial chemical hydride hydrogen storage system models; includes various configurations of mass transport mechanisms, spent fuel reservoirs and reactors
  • Initial adsorbent hydrogen storage system models; includes various configurations of heat exchangers, pressure vessels, buffer tanks and pumps.

Projects focused on improving methods:

  • Programming of HSSIM (Hydrogen Storage SIMulator) to aid in prediction of impact of technical targets
  • Coupling of vehicle modeling, fuel cell modeling and storage system modeling in a MatLab/Comsol/Simulink environment
  • Identifying acceptability criteria and UP/DOWN select methodology for Metal Hydrides, Chemical Hydrides and Adsorbent materials
  • Completing identification of parametric models to be used for Metal Hydride, Chemical Hydride and Adsorbent system thermal models
  • Compiling a database for each of the materials to be modeled and identified technical data gaps in the data with plans to fill these gaps
  • Completing an Acceptability Envelope for metal hydrides to aid in determination of the critical thermochemical characteristics required for storage system consideration
  • Identifying critical technologies for pressure vessels, sensing, insulation, thermal generation and fuel purity required to enable use of various storage system materials

Determined the current system technical target status of the following:

  • Metal hydrides based on NaAlH4 and technology gaps (gravimetric density, cycle life, safety and toxicity) needing to be addressed to meet the 2010 and 2015 technical targets
  • Chemical hydrides based on solid NH3BH3 and technology gaps (fuel purity, fill time, minimum full flow rate and loss of useable hydrogen) needing to be addressed to meet the 2010 and 2015 technical targets
  • Adsorbents based on super activated carbon and technology gaps (volumetric density, minimum delivery pressure and loss of useable hydrogen) needing to be addressed to meet the 2010 and 2015 technical targets


Our History

The Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence (HSECoE) was established in 2009 by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to advance the development of materials-based hydrogen storage systems for hydrogen-fueled light-duty vehicles. The overall objective of the HSECoE is to develop complete, integrated system concepts that utilize reversible metal hydrides, adsorbents, and chemical hydrogen storage materials through the use of advanced engineering concepts and designs that can simultaneously meet or exceed all the DOE targets.1


Technical Objectives

The Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence is a team of universities, industrial corporations, and federal laboratories with the mandate to develop lower-pressure, materials-based, hydrogen storage systems for hydrogen fuel cell light-duty vehicles. Three material-based approaches to hydrogen storage were researched: 1) chemical hydrogen storage materials 2) cryo-adsorbents, and 3) metal hydrides.2



Once established, as a partner in the Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence, the Ford-UM-BASF team conducted a multi-faceted research program that addresses key engineering challenges associated with the development of materials-based hydrogen storage systems. This included developing a novel framework that allowed for a material-based hydrogen storage system to be modeled and operated within a virtual fuel cell vehicle. This effort resulted in the ability to assess dynamic operating parameters and interactions between the storage system and fuel cell power plant, including the evaluation of performance throughout various drive cycles. Also included were cost modeling of various incarnations of the storage systems. This analysis revealed cost gaps and opportunities that identified a storage system that was lower cost than a 700 bar compressed system. Finally, HSECoE efforts were devoted to characterizing and enhancing metal organic framework (MOF) storage materials. The Ford-UM-BASF project contributions to the HSECoE were during the 6-year timeframe of the Center. The activities of the HSECoE have impacted the broader goals of the DOE-EERE and USDRIVE, leading to improved understanding in the engineering of materials-based hydrogen storage systems. This knowledge is a prerequisite to the development of a commercially-viable hydrogen storage system. 3



HSECoE developed prototype designs and evaluation plans for each of the hexcell and MATI sorbent systems using a 2-L Type I (all metal) aluminum pressure vessel. The Hydrogen Storage sub-program also established and posted the metal hydride (MH) acceptability envelope, MH finite element model, hydrogen tank mass and cost estimator, and hydrogen vehicle simulation framework models for public availability. 4



Developed comprehensive sets of hydrogen storage targets for onboard automotive, portable power, and MHE targets. Strategic planning for technologies included cold and cryo-compressed hydrogen and materials-based storage technologies. Material-based efforts included total systems engineering and hydrogen storage materials discovery (adsorbents, metal hydrides, and chemical hydrogen storage materials). Completed Phase II and transitioned into Phase III - sub-scale system prototype development.



The Hydrogen Storage Simulation Model (HSSIM) was developed under the Hydrogen Storage Engineering Center of Excellence (HSECoE) as a specialized tool that could be used to assist in the design and engineering of materials-based hydrogen storage systems being considered by the HSECoE. This tool is designed to not only allow for understanding key trade-offs, but also to have a seamless integration with the HSECoE fuel cell and detailed hydrogen storage system models and to evaluate progress towards the U.S. Department of Energy's hydrogen storage technical targets. This model has been integrated with a fuel cell model developed by Ford Motor Company in a HSECoE common modeling framework developed by United Technologies Research Center and other HSECoE partners. 5


Project Began

Beginning of a 3 Phase (each approximately 2 years in length) for the Metal Hydride System Architect. In Phase 1, comprehensive system engineering analyses and assessments were made of the three classes of storage media that included development of system level transport and thermal models of alternative conceptual storage configurations to permit detailed comparisons against the DOE performance targets for light-duty vehicles. Also included was identification and technical justifications for candidate storage media and configurations that should be capable of reaching or exceeding the DOE targets. Phase 2 involved bench-level testing and evaluation of system configurations, including material packaging and balance-of-plant components, and conceptual design validation. Phase 3 includes fabrication and testing of the selected prototype storage system(s) for model validation and performance evaluation against the DOE targets. A DOE decision was needed for the HSECoE to advance to each phase and work on some classes of storage materials were recommended not to continue. 6