Safety Planning and Codes & Standards

Safe practices for the production, storage, distribution and use of hydrogen are essential to establish public confidence and for reducing barriers to widespread acceptance of hydrogen technologies. This page identifies relevant codes, standards and safety resources that would have enabled the contestants to provide a successful submission.

Safety Planning

As part of the design submission for finalist selection, contestants must include a safety plan and a hazard analysis. See references below for guidance. Finalist systems must have received approvals from local planning/zoning, fire and building officials before system operation; this may require some approval processes be started by the time of design submission, and that should be indicated in the submission information.

Safety planning and hazard analysis guidance specific to H2 Refuel H-Prize submissions is provided in the Safety Planning Guidance for the 2014-2016 H-Prize Competition.

Codes and Standards

Designs must meet the relevant safety codes and standards for installation in the target location, including the applicable parts of the following:

  • NFPA 2, Hydrogen Technologies Code, 2011 Edition
  • NFPA 70, National Electrical CodeĀ®
  • ASME B31.3, Process Piping; or B31.12, Hydrogen Piping and Pipelines
  • ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (BPV)
  • SAE J2719

The following fueling protocols are likely to apply to some but not all potential system designs; relevant designs/submittals will be expected to be meet these codes and standards where applicable.

  • SAE J2601: for automotive fueling
  • SAE J2601-2: for heavy duty vehicle fueling
  • ISO/IS 22734-2: Hydrogen generators using water electrolysis process, residential applications

Additional codes and standards may apply depending on the system design and installation location.

Submissions that deviate from the base codes and standards listed will need to provide detail information on what is different and how equivalent safety is provided.

Safety Resources

Practices and procedures should be implemented that will ensure safety in operating, handling, and using hydrogen and hydrogen systems. Key resources that may be helpful to achieve that goal are provided below.

The Hydrogen Safety Best Practices Manual is an online manual that captures the wealth of knowledge and experience related to the safe handling and use of hydrogen that exists as a result of its extensive history in a wide variety of applications. The purpose of the manual, prepared collaboratively by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Los Alamos National Laboratory, is to share this knowledge gathered from numerous experts, public domain documents, and references in an online, easy-to-use manner.

The Hydrogen Lessons Learned Database provides learnings and other relevant information gained from actual experiences working with hydrogen. The database contains records of events involving hydrogen or hydrogen-related technologies.

The web-based course Hydrogen Safety Training for Researchers provides basic hydrogen safety training for researchers and technical personnel handling hydrogen. The course covers basic information on pressure, cryogenics, flammability, asphyxiation, and other risks and precautions for using hydrogen.

A Hydrogen Tools web based portal is being developed by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in support of the deployment of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies. The portal will focus on safety and be available for public use in the spring of 2015.