Skip to content

A Numerical Simulation on the Leakage Event of a High-Pressure Hydrogen Dispenser


For the sake of the increasing demand of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, there are more concerns on the safety of hydrogen refueling stations. As one of the key pieces of equipment, the hydrogen dispenser has drawn attention on this aspect since it involves massive manual operations and may be bothered by a high probability of failure. In this paper, a numerical study is conducted to simulate the possible leakage events of the hydrogen dispenser based on a prototype in China whose working pressure is 70 MPa. The leakage accident is analyzed with respect to leakage sizes, leak directions, and the time to stop the leakage. It is found that, due to the large mass flow rate under such high pressure, the leak direction and the layout of the components inside the dispenser become insignificant, and the ignitable clouds will form inside the dispenser in less than 1 s if there is a leakage of 1% size of the main tube. The ignitable clouds will form near the vent holes outside the dispenser, which may dissipate quickly if the leakage is stopped. On the other hand, the gas inside the dispenser will remain ignitable for a long time, which asks for a design with no possible ignition source inside. The results can be useful in optimizing the design of the dispenser, regarding the reaction time and sensitivity requirements of the leakage detector, the size and amount of vent holes, etc.

Funding source: This research was funded by the National Key Research and Development Program of China (No. 2019YFB1505203).
Related subjects: Safety

Article metrics loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error