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Safety Code Equivalencies in Hydrogen Infrastructure Deployment


Various studies and market trends show that the number of hydrogen fuelling stations will increase to the thousands in the US by 2050. NFPA 2, Hydrogen Technologies Code (NFPA2), the nationally adopted primary code governing hydrogen safety, is relatively new and hydrogen vehicle technology is a relatively new and rapidly developing technology. In order to effectively aid and accelerate the deployment of standardized retail hydrogen fuelling facilities, the permitting of hydrogen fuelling stations employing outdoor bulk liquid storage in the state of California.
In an effort to better understand how the applicants, consultants, and more importantly, the Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ)s are interpreting and applying the NFPA 2, especially for complex applications, the newest hydrogen stations with the largest amount of bulk hydrogen storage in urban environment settings were identified and the permit applications and permit approval outcomes of the said stations were analysed. Utilizing the pubic record request process, LH2 station permit applications were reviewed along with the approval outcomes directly from the municipalities that issued the permits. AHJs with H2 station permitting experience were interviewed. Case studies of permit hydrogen fuelling station permit applications were then complied to document both the perspectives of the applicant and the AHJ and the often iterative and collaborative nature of permitting.
The current permitting time for Liquid Hydrogen (LH2) stations can range from 9 to 18 months in the California. Five out of the six LH2 stations applications required Alternative Means & Methods (AM&Ms) proposals and deviations from the prescriptive requirements of the Code were granted. Furthermore, AHJs often requested additional documents and studies specific to application parameters, in addition to NFPA 2 requirements.

Related subjects: Safety
Countries: United States

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Safety code equivalencies in hydrogen infrastructure deployment

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