On Nov. 7 and 8, Sandia hosted visiting fuel cell electric vehicle engineers from the Japanese automotive industry. On the first day of the visit, engineers from the Nissan Technical Center North America learned more about Sandia’s work in fueling research and the Center for Infrastructure Research and Integration (CIRI). Sandia is forming industrial partnerships through CIRI to improve reliability and help reduce the current high cost of hydrogen fueling infrastructure, which is limiting the wide-spread deployment of fuel cell vehicles.
On the second day, engineers from Nissan, Toyota, and the Japanese Automotive Research Institute (JARI) learned more about the technical basis for the Compressed Hydrogen Material Characterization (CHMC-1) standard, co-developed by Sandia researcher Chris San Marchi. This CSA CHMC-1 standard provides uniform test methods for evaluating material compatibility with compressed hydrogen applications. The standard is being considered for elevation to a United Nations (UN) Global Technical Regulation (GTR) for qualifying structural materials for high-pressure hydrogen service, overcoming international barriers to commerce. The new GTR specifies safety-related performance requirements for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, aiming at protecting occupants from fire or explosion of the hydrogen on-board containers. The regulation enables global automakers to develop vehicles that meet harmonized performance standards and thus enabling international sale of new vehicle platforms.