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Liquid Hydrogen: A Review on Liquefaction, Storage, Transportation, and Safety


Decarbonization plays an important role in future energy systems for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and establishing a zero-carbon society. Hydrogen is believed to be a promising secondary energy source (energy carrier) that can be converted, stored, and utilized efficiently, leading to a broad range of possibilities for future applications. Moreover, hydrogen and electricity are mutually converted, creating high energy security and broad economic opportunities toward high energy resilience. Hydrogen can be stored in various forms, including compressed gas, liquid hydrogen, hydrides, adsorbed hydrogen, and reformed fuels. Among these, liquid hydrogen has advantages, including high gravimetric and volumetric hydrogen densities and hydrogen purity. However, liquid hydrogen is garnering increasing attention owing to the demand for long storage periods, long transportation distances, and economic performance. This paper reviews the characteristics of liquid hydrogen, liquefaction technology, storage and transportation methods, and safety standards to handle liquid hydrogen. The main challenges in utilizing liquid hydrogen are its extremely low temperature and ortho- to para-hydrogen conversion. These two characteristics have led to the urgent development of hydrogen liquefaction, storage, and transportation. In addition, safety standards for handling liquid hydrogen must be updated regularly, especially to facilitate massive and large-scale hydrogen liquefaction, storage, and transportation.

Funding source: This research was financially supported by JSPS KAKENHI Grant Number JP19K04211 and the Iwatani Naoji Foundation.
Countries: Japan

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