HEA outlines roadmap to navigate standardisation bumps for HGVs on their hydrogen journey

The country’s leading hydrogen trade association is looking to pave the way for hydrogen as a decarbonising solution for HGVs where range, power, payload and refuelling times are paramount.

A new paper, Hydrogen Refuelling Infrastructure: Standardisation, released today by the Hydrogen Energy Association (HEA), offers a series of recommendations that would help the sector work more collaboratively to overcome hurdles to adopting and rollout.

Celia Greaves, CEO of the HEA, said the establishment of a refuelling infrastructure was a necessity and highlighted factors impacting the rate at which the network develops, including support for the sector, economies of scale, cost and, significantly, standardisation.

“In the UK’s journey to net zero, transport is one of the main areas where hydrogen is seen as a key route to decarbonisation,” she said. “This HEA Position Paper explores the state of standardisation across hydrogen refuelling, particularly for heavy duty transport and identifies gaps in provision while providing recommendations to accelerate progress.”

Standardisation is the development and implementation of technical standards based on health and safety good practice and consensus among technical experts. It can deliver both quality, safety, interoperability and repeatability, and supply chain export opportunities.

Celia said: “This is a complex landscape with a range of national and international bodies active and varying rates of progress. The paper provides extensive detail on the breadth of current provision and the players involved. And, as such, it represents a snapshot in time. 

“The hydrogen space as a whole is moving forward at pace, and similar forward momentum is needed across hydrogen refuelling standardisation.”

Major sticking points identified in the paper include the current absence of protocols for refuelling HGVs, the need for design guidelines and component certification and testing standards across different pressure classes, and the lack of a consistent approach to training. 

The HEA is campaigning for a systematic approach to standards development to accelerate the standardisation process at the pace the industry requires.

As such, it is calling on the UK Government, Industry, BSI, Health and Safety Executive and the Hydrogen Skills Alliance to collaborate to ensure the development of the right standards in refuelling protocols, instrumentation and training to maintain momentum.

Celia added: “The HEA will continue to liaise with these and other UK stakeholders to ensure that the opportunities which hydrogen for transport offers can be realised efficiently and quickly.”

You can see the full policy paper here with all recommendations.