Client Description:

U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is the United States’ primary laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. Since 2004, GNA has been an on-call technical specialist for alternative fuel, fuel blends, and fuel-efficient transportation projects.

Client Goals:

  • Investigate the opportunities to roll out hydrogen fueling infrastructure along strategically important transportation corridors in California and the Western United States.
  • To gain an understanding of the state of hydrogen transportation and fueling technology, the existing and projected use of hydrogen as a transportation fuel, and the options for the supply of hydrogen to a future network of fueling stations that would be arrayed along this projected hydrogen fueling corridor.
  • Determine the options of generating hydrogen on site, including an evaluation of hydrocarbon reforming technologies, electrolysis, and even technologies for the generation of hydrogen on board vehicles.

NRELs report on integrating hydrogen infrastructure into ICTC corridor NREL

GNA Strategy:

  • GNA examined how hydrogen product and refueling infrastructure could be added to existing LNG and LNG/LCNG refueling stations in critical locations in order to quickly and efficiently developed the nation’s first viable hydrogen infrastructure corridor.
  • This effort was based upon the backbone of the LNG refueling infrastructure GNA already helped to create through its award winning Interstate Clean Transportation Corridor (ICTC) Project, as well as other efforts being undertaken by the South Coast Air Quality Management District and the California Hydrogen Highway.
  • GNA surveyed the infrastructure and deployment activities in the ICTC project and determined that several of these sites could make excellent platforms for future hydrogen demonstration projects.
  • This study was published by NREL in 2005, and was posted online. The study was conducted under NREL Subcontract LCM-4-44175-01: Technical Support – Natural Gas/Hydrogen Co-located Refueling Station and Infrastructure Evaluation.

Project Results:

  • Natural gas stations can serve as the backbone for the development of the nation’s hydrogen-based transportation system. Existing natural gas trucks and fueling infrastructure that has been established by the ICTC Project presents an excellent opportunity for accelerating the use of hydrogen in transportation as well as expanding the availability of crucial hydrogen production and dispensing infrastructure along key transportation corridors.
  • Each of the sites examined enjoys substantial advantages for potential future hydrogen technology demonstration and deployment, including the strategic importance of the location, the willingness of the fleet operator to participate in a demonstration project, and the potential ease with which hydrogen dispensing or on-board fueling technology can be integrated into existing assets.