The German State of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) is supporting a joint development project of Rheinmetall AG of Düsseldorf and the Institute for Textile Technology of RWTH Aachen University with a grant of €4.7 million.
Andreas Pinkwart, NRW’s Minister for Economics, Innovation, Digitization and Energy, presented the consortium with a formal grant notice for the H2LORICA project on 9 June 2022.
Formulated at the end of 2020, the state government’s hydrogen roadmap calls for 11,000 trucks, 3,800 buses and 1,000 refuse collection vehicles to be powered by fuel cells by 2030. In order to achieve this objective, hydrogen tank systems for mobility applications must be available, efficient, safe, and inexpensive.
This is where the development initiative comes in. The partners have developed a technology for manufacturing innovative pressure tanks for hydrogen that offers multiple advantages. The task now is to prepare this technology for production.
Slated to last three years, the project aims to develop an innovative hydrogen pressure tank system, specifically a Type IV pressure tank (700 bar). First and foremost, concrete development goals include boosting hydrogen storage capacity, attaining greater cycle stability, and achieving a longer service life. Furthermore, work now focuses on improving fire prevention, reducing the time it takes to refuel, and better thermal management.
Innovative production technology is intended to boost quality and cut production times by 80% – 90 %. Ultimately, these factors are expected to lead to relevant cost savings. Total expenditure by the two project partners comes to around €7.3 million.
NRW minister Andreas Pinkwart, said, “In our hydrogen roadmap, we have formulated very ambitious goals for a climate-friendly hydrogen economy and the roll out of hydrogen-based engines, especially for heavy transport vehicles.”
Armin Papperger, chairman of the executive board of Rheinmetall AG, said, “We are grateful to the state government for their material and financial support of our technological efforts and are eager to play our part in making NRW an important player in the world of H2 technology.”