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Hydrogen Storage

Hydrogen storage is a key enabling technology for the advancement of hydrogen and fuel cell power technologies in transportation, stationary, and portable applications. DOE's efforts focus primarily on the R&D of on-board vehicular hydrogen storage systems that will allow for a driving range of greater than 300 miles while meeting packaging, cost, safety, and performance requirements to be competitive with current vehicles. While automakers have recently demonstrated progress with some prototype vehicles traveling more than 300 miles on a single fill, this driving range must be achievable across different vehicle models and without compromising space, performance or cost.

In addition, hydrogen storage systems for off-board applications, such as the hydrogen delivery and refueling infrastructure and Power Parks, are also being investigated, which is coordinated with the hydrogen delivery program.

This DOE Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program activity is focused on advanced storage of hydrogen (or its precursors) on vehicles or within the distribution system.

Illustration: Compact, lightweight carbon adsorbant materials, like carbon nanotubes, can store significant amounts of hydrogen at room temperature and are being investigated for possible use in a hydrogen storage system.

High-Pressure and Cryogenic Tanks

The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy is developing and evaluating advanced concepts to store hydrogen at high pressures and cryogenic temperatures that improve volumetric capacity, conformability, and cost of storage.

Advanced Solid State and Liquid Materials

The Offices of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and Fossil Energy are working to develop innovative materials for reversible hydrogen storage including high surface area adsorbents, metal organic frameworks, and metal hydrides, as well as approaches that are regenerable off-board such as chemical hydrides and liquid carriers.

Basic Research

In the Office of Science's basic research program, the main focus will be on basic research needs in developing novel storage materials and methods. The broad class of storage materials to be studied includes various forms of complex hydrides and nanostructured materials.