EIHP1 Results


In general, the Partners of the EIHP regard the project as being unique in its approach and achievements in the hydrogen field and as being very successful. The EIHP can only be regarded as a first step in a longer process as there is still a lot of work to be accomplished in order to promote the safe introduction of the hydrogen vehicle and the creation of a hydrogen energy supply chain.

The two draft regulations for the approval of hydrogen fuelled road vehicles are now finalised. During the application process for an ECE regulation within WP29, the analysis of legislation in other countries could become necessary in order to consolidate the draft. Based on the time needed for the discussion of the CNG draft within ECE, at least 3 years of discussions is expected. The European Commission should promote projects that agree to use these drafts as construction codes and promote these drafts together with national administrationsThe progress of the drafts should also be complemented with further technical development of LH2 systems, including the design of safety valves and the design of a boil-off management system.

Further work is needed to identify the requirements regarding regular inspection of LH2 and CGH2 vehicles. Final acceptance of the ECE regulation into EU-law and into national law of the member states has to be undertaken.

In order to develop the draft regulations into global regulations the support by the signatory states of ECE WP29 is needed.

The relevant industrial companies must continue to support this important goal.

As the present EIHP covered hydrogen infrastructure related components on a very limited scale, such a work shall also be undertaken for refuelling infrastructure issues. First for refuelling stations (design rules and integration into urban environments), then for parking garages, tunnels, maintenance shops, and finally for on-site hydrogen production plants.

As most of the industrial organisations in the automotive and fuel supply business are international or multinational undertakings a harmonisation of standards, codes of practice and regulations on international level is indispensable. Harmonised regulations and approval procedures will drastically reduce the efforts (e.g. time, cost) for industry in bringing their products to the market. On the other hand, all citizens will benefit from more standardised products as they will be safer, more cost competitive, and easier to use.

The process started by the EIHP has to be pursued with increased efforts in order to maintain and improve the position of European industry in the competitive global economic environment, as the automotive industry is presently aiming for the commercialisation of minimum emission vehicles over the next decade. Automotive and fuel supply industries face the difficult situation of

  • a dramatically increasing demand in mobility (almost 1 billion new motorist in Asia and Latin America by 2040),
  • the need to reduce CO2 emissions by 25% before 2010 and for the industrial countries by 80% by 2050 in order to achieve an overall CO2 reduction of in average 50% by 2050, the only way to stabilise ever growing human induced climate change effects
  • peaking world petroleum production in the present decade and the initiation of an irreversible downward trend in oil production and thus increasing crude oil prices

The introduction of hydrogen and fuel cells to the transport sector seems to represent the most promising chance for a sustainable restructuring of the transport and fuel economy. Europe should make maximum use of its human and technological resources. The route to harmonised legislation which EIHP started deserves further coordinated support, morally and financially, from the involved stakeholders, i.e. industry, SMEs, regulatory authorities and governments.