Carbon Fiber Composite Material Cost Challenges for Compressed Hydrogen Storage On-Board Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles
A goal of the Hydrogen Storage Program (the Program), part of the Fuel Cell Technologies Office within the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy, is to develop and demonstrate advanced hydrogen storage technologies to enable successful commercialization of hydrogen fuel cell technologies. Compact, reliable, safe, and cost-effective hydrogen storage is key for the widespread commercialization of fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs). A fundamental challenge is how to cost-effectively store quantities of hydrogen on-board FCEVs to achieve a driving range of at least 300 miles, without sacrificing passenger and cargo space. The current state of the art is to store compressed gaseous hydrogen fuel in carbon fiber reinforced Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessels (COPVs) at 700-bar pressure. The Program is developing strategies and supports R&D efforts to address the high cost of carbon fiber reinforced composite materials needed for safe high-pressure COPVs in FCEVs. The following provides an overview of supported R&D addressing lower cost carbon fiber precursor materials and processing, alternative fibers to carbon fibers, alternative resins, and alternative COPV designs and manufacturing processes.
Author: John J. Gangloff Jr., Grace Ordaz, Katie Randolph, Jesse Adams, and Ned Stetson
Conference: SAMPE Seattle 2017