Wednesday, June 12, 2019

No hydrogen in the Bay Area due to transport concerns?

A recent chemical plant explosion at an Air Products and Chemical, Inc. facility in Santa Clara County has grounded fuel cell vehicles to a halt in the Bay Area. While there were thankfully no injuries, Air Products, a hydrogen supplier, told ABC7 News that as a precaution, it has pulled all hydrogen supply vehicles off the roads to perform an inspection to ensure the safety of these vehicles. 
The chemical plant explosion, which occurred on Saturday, June 1, reportedly shook buildings for miles in the San Francisco Bay Area, leaving many residents believing at first that they were experiencing an earthquake. 
It took fire crews over an hour to put out the blaze. According to preliminary investigation findings, the explosion occurred as a tanker truck was being filled with hydrogen. However, the official cause of the blast has yet to be confirmed. 
That being said, the explosion has left drivers of fuel cell vehicles unable to refuel their cars and so far Air Products does not know when service will resume....
I wonder what specifically downchecked the hydrogen trucks?  

1 comment:

  1. there was a hydrogen leak during refill of a truck tank, and the emergency shutoff valve malfunctioned. This is an inherent problem when you are using very low viscosity (=leaky) gas like hydrogen, that tends to embrittle metals, and under several hundred atm of pressure. No-one was injured because the crew was standing in safe distance during the fueling - they knew it was hazardous... Which is good news, but it shows you the technology is not mature. Obviously they are inspecting other trucks now, to make sure the problem does not repeat itself.

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