Munich– In Germany, 17 public hydrogen refueling stations went into operation in 2018. This makes Germany the world’s second largest network with 60 public filling stations. It is only surpassed by Japan with 96 public gas stations. Third in the USA with 42 public gas stations. A total of 48 public hydrogen refueling stations were put into operation worldwide last year. This is the result of the 11th annual evaluation of H2stations.org, a website of Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik (LBST) and TÜV SÜD.
At the end of 2018, there were 60 hydrogen refueling stations in Germany that could be used like conventional filling stations. There are already plans for 38 further filling stations at specific locations, of which 34 locations are operated by the industrial initiative H2 Mobility Germany. Thus, Germany remains the country with the second largest hydrogen refueling infrastructure, ahead of the USA, and is only surpassed by Japan. With four start-ups in eastern Germany, another step towards a nationwide hydrogen infrastructure and thus a compression of the hydrogen corridors from east to west and north to south in Europe took place in 2018.
International expansion was at a steady level in Japan with nine and in California with six gas stations. Four gas stations have been completed in the northeastern United States and are now awaiting their opening. Significant changes have been made to the concrete expansion plans for the Netherlands (17 planned service stations), France (12), Canada (7), South Korea (27) and China (18). The figures quoted refer only to gas stations for which at least specific cities are mentioned. In China, present approximate planning of the provinces leads to significantly higher numbers. Unlike in South Korea and Japan, where gas stations are mostly used for passenger cars, China is first working on infrastructure upgrades for fuel cell buses and small distribution vehicles.
Remarkable are the increasing activities in the use of hydrogen as fuel for trucks. In addition to Hyundai and Nikola Motor, Toyota is also working on the development of fuel cell-powered trucks and their refueling infrastructure. A dedicated service station has already been commissioned in southern California. In Europe, a fuel cell truck has been operating in Switzerland since 2016.
The importance of hydrogen in the energy transition is being implemented in more and more projects. In Schleswig-Holstein, three hydrogen refueling stations are to be supplied by hydrogen, which is generated in nearby wind farms by electrolysis. In Iceland, the hydrogen for the new filling stations is generated by a geothermal power plant. On the Scottish Orkney Islands, hydrogen is generated by electricity from a tidal power station and from wind turbines and used for ten fuel vehicles, among other things.
To the knowledge of Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik, there are currently 152 filling stations in Europe, 136 in Asia and 78 in North America. Of the 369 petrol stations worldwide, 273 are public and thus usable for everyone. The rest of the gas stations are reserved for closed user groups and supply, for example, buses or fleet vehicles.
Interactive maps and individual analyses
On the website H2stations.org ( www.H2stations.org ), interested parties can use interactive maps to locate all hydrogen refueling stations in operation, planned and closed down worldwide. In addition to current news and information on projects already completed, the site also provides an overview of the development of the hydrogen infrastructure.
The underlying database is constantly updated and contains detailed information on currently almost 1,000 service stations worldwide. “As before, we provide the basic data on the website for private use free of charge,” says LBST Managing Director. Uwe Albrecht. “For the professional use we license the data including further detailed information and create regular reports for our customers on new developments as well as individual evaluations.”
Information and services for hydrogen and fuel cells
In their joint hydrogen and fuel cell portal www.netinform.de/H2 , LBST and TÜV SÜD have compiled comprehensive information and services for professional users and interested lay people. In addition to www.H2stations.org , the portal also includes the website www.H2mobility.org with an overview of all hydrogen vehicles since 1807 as well as detailed technical information and a rule service.
Ludwig-Bölkow-Systemtechnik GmbH is a consulting company for sustainable energy supply and mobility. She supports her international clients from industry, finance, politics and associations on technology, strategy and sustainability issues. Over three decades of continuous experience of the interdisciplinary team of renowned experts form the basis of LBST’s comprehensive expertise.