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Hydrogen Supply Chain and Refuelling Network Design: Assessment of Alternative Scenarios for the Long-haul Road Freight in the UK


Shifting from fossil fuels to clean alternative fuel options such as hydrogen is an essential step in decarbonising the road freight transport sector and facilitating an efficient transition towards zero-emissions goods distribution of the future. Designing an economically viable and competitive Hydrogen Supply Chain (HSC) to support and accelerate the widespread adoption of hydrogen powered Heavy Goods Vehicles (H2-HGVs) is, however, significantly hindered by the lack of the infrastructure required for producing, storing, transporting and distributing the required hydrogen. This paper focuses on a bespoke design of a hydrogen supply chain and distribution network for the long-haul road freight transportation in the UK and develops an improved end-to-end and spatially-explicit optimisation tool to perform scenario analysis and provide important first-hand managerial and policy making insights. The proposed methodology improves over existing grid-based methodologies by incorporating spatially-explicit locations of Hydrogen Refuelling Stations (HRSs) and allowing further flexibility and accuracy. Another distinctive feature of the method and the analyses carried out in the paper pertains to the inclusion of bulk geographically agnostic, as well as geological underground hydrogen storage options, and reporting on significant cost saving opportunities. Finally, the curve for H2-HGVs penetration levels, safety stock period decisions, and the transport mode capacity against hydrogen levelized cost at pump have been generated as important policy making tools to provide decision support and insights into cost, resilience and reliability of the HSC.

Funding source: The work reported in this paper has been supported by the UK's Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) through the Programme Grant EP/S032134/1 “A network for hydrogen-fuelled transportation (Network-H2)”.
Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: United Kingdom

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