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1 July 2010
ITM Power plc ("the Company")
Hydrogen Purity Certification
ITM Power, the energy storage and clean fuel company is pleased to announce its participation in a Joint Industry Project (JIP) with the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) directed at establishing a suite of analytical methods for the measurement of trace-level impurities in hydrogen. The project is underway and part funded by the National Measurement Office (NMO).
Greater uptake of hydrogen as a fuel will depend in part on the ability to produce low cost hydrogen which is of a sufficient purity. These purity requirements are being set out in a series of draft International Standards (ISO 14687), with differing purities depending on the appliance in question. Where hydrogen is used to fuel proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells, the recommended limits of impurities permissible to avoid poisoning of the fuel cell catalysts are laid out in two ISO draft standards which are currently under development:
ISO/CD 14687-2: 2009 - Hydrogen fuel - Product specification - Part 2: Proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell applications for road vehicles
ISO/WD 14687-3: 2009 - Hydrogen fuel - Product specification - Part 3: Proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell applications for stationary appliances
The draft ISO 14687-2 standard is consistent with SAE J2719 - Information Report on the Development of a Hydrogen Quality Guideline for Fuel Cell Vehicles
Presently, no infrastructure for measurements to such challenging limits-of-detection is available in the UK. ITM is contributing to this important project by providing samples of electrolytic hydrogen as feedstock to the analysis process and hosting sampling tests.
NPL is the UK's national measurement institute and is a world-leading centre of excellence in developing and applying the most accurate measurement standards, science and technology available to man. For more than a century NPL has developed and maintained the nation's primary measurement standards. These standards underpin an infrastructure of traceability throughout the UK and the world that ensures accuracy and consistency of measurement.
This project will enable NPL to develop innovative analysis and sampling methods to allow the purity of the hydrogen produced by electrolysers or other technologies to be determined to the necessary accuracy to be suitable for use in fuel cell applications according to the draft ISO/CD 14687-2 and ISO/WD 14687-3. Once developed, these methods can be used for other industrial applications in the UK hydrogen industry where purity measurements are critical, for example, the use of hydrogen as a carrier gas in analytical chemistry.
Andrew Brown, Senior Research Scientist at NPL commented: "It is vital that the UK develops the skills and techniques necessary to certify hydrogen purity against international standards. NPL are pleased to be working with ITM in this field enabling evaluation of electrolytic hydrogen samples."
Karen Hall, Administrative Manager of UKHA commented: "This project is a refreshing example of companies taking the initiative and doing their bit for the UK hydrogen industry. Without appropriate analysis and sampling techniques it will be impossible to demonstrate compliance with the international standards currently under development."
Graham Cooley, CEO of ITM Power commented: "ITM are committed to achieving the right hydrogen purity for its customers. NPL is the best placed organisation in the UK to develop appropriate gas analysis and provide independent assessment. We look forward to the results across our product portfolio."
For further information please visit www.itm-power.com or contact:
ITM Power plc
Graham Cooley, CEO
0114 244 5111
Panmure Gordon & Co.
020 7459 3600
Simon Hudson / James Midmer
020 7920 3150