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Design Project 2 Hydrogen Fueling Station


									   Design Project 2:
Hydrogen Fueling Station
         Section 16, Group 6
      Submitted to: Jeonghwan Jin
             May 2, 2011

    Matt Landro (
    Chad Brown (
  Ricardo Quintana (
   Aaron Fonseca (

       The purpose if this project is to design a hydrogen fueling station that can fuel the cars of

a specific city that each group chose. This fueling station must supply hydrogen gas (H2) and

also a mixture of both the hydrogen and clean natural gas (HCNG). The station has to be able to

supply all of the demand of hydrogen per station and it must also be able to supply both 350 and

700 BAR pressurized gas so that both private cars and public transportation vehicles can be

fueled there. This fueling station must be created in an actual city. In addition, we must also take

into account the methods in which this hydrogen is going to be produced, how much of it needs

to be made, and how we will acquire the energy in order to run this production without taking so

much energy out of the current power grid. In order to do this, we have evaluated different

sources of renewable energy and selected a couple of sources in order to use them to fuel or

production and distribution of H2 and HCNG. These sources have to be renewable and also be

efficient so that we can get the most energy without using up too much land or labor.


       Hydrogen gas is a new form of fuel that this just beginning to be explored and one that is

beginning to gain more and more popularity. It works through a reaction in which the hydrogen

is combusted with oxygen and the only emission is water. This reaction is very efficient for it

creates a tremendous amount of energy. Unfortunately, there is a downside to the use of

hydrogen gas. Hydrogen gas is not naturally present and therefore, it must be produced

synthetically through any of the available methods. Some possible methods include electrolysis,

which is the splitting of water to create oxygen and hydrogen. Another possible method is natural

gas refinement, which is the separation of the hydrogen by burning methane and using high-
pressured steam to create a gas with a high concentration of steam. And finally, Gasification,

which is the transformation of steam into a gas mixture with a high concentration of hydrogen

gas through a series of complicated chemical reactions.


       The city that we chose as a group to place our hydrogen and HCNG fueling station is the

capital of Japan, Tokyo. It is a dense and very large city located in the southeastern end of

Japan’s main island. It has a population of 13,010,279 people in the entire city, but because we

are only concentrating on the center of the city, we worried more about the population at the

center of the city, which are 8,000,000 people. Even though we only chose to concentrate on the

center of the city only, this is still a good place for the creation of the hydrogen fueling station

because it has such a large population that only this part still has a significant population with

comparison to other smaller cities of the world.

       The reason that we chose this city is because it is a city that is growing and in a short

amount of time. It is one of the economic centers of the world and it is also the place where a lot

of the most innovative technology is coming from. Additionally, it is a city that is very

compacted and always active at seen in the picture below.
As seen above, there is a lot going on even at night and therefore, there is a great consumption

of fossil fuels and all these could be replaced by H2 and HCNG, creating a great environmental

improvement. Also, there is an extremely large population (8,000,000) in just the center of the

city, excluding the outer part of the city. Because of all of this, we decided that the center of

Tokyo would be a great place for the development of this new and innovative fueling source. In

addition, since the city is always at the forefront of innovation, we figure that this city will be

open to new ideas so that they can be the ones to introduce this new fueling source and so that

they can be the ones that show the world that there is indeed a future with other fueling sources,

besides petroleum.

       Not only is Tokyo a good location to put our hydrogen fueling station for its

technological inclination, but also because it is a good source of renewable energy. Because the

creation of hydrogen is one that requires a lot of energy, we must find sources of renewable in
order to power the production and fueling of the hydrogen. Fortunately, there are various forms

of renewable energy that one can use in Tokyo.

       The first source of renewable energy source that we contemplated about was solar

energy. This energy can be harnessed through the use of solar panels where the sun provides the

energy. It is a good idea because the solar panels can be placed all over the ceilings of the fueling

stations and on top of the production factories and therefore, they would capture the most amount

of sunlight. In addition, because they would be placed on top of the ceilings, they would not

require extra space on the land and that is an important trait in Tokyo since the city is very

compacted and there is not too much space.

       Another source of renewable energy that we are contemplating using is hydroelectric

power. This requires the use of dams and also the use of a lot of water. Fortunately, that is not a

problem in Tokyo because the city is next to a fair-sized bay, which means that there is a lot of

water. In addition, there are already some dams present near Tokyo such as the Shiromaru Dam

pictured below.
This shows that there are already some dams near Tokyo and that means that a lot less money

would have to be invested in the creation of dams but rather the only money that would need to

be invested would be that to put in the hydroelectric generator.

        Finally, a third possible source of renewable energy is biomass energy/landfill energy.

This is when methane crated from waste is collected and then used as an energy source. This

source of energy is good because there is a lot of waste in Tokyo since it is such a condensed

city. Therefore we could use all of the sewage for something good and then get benefitted from it

rather than to just let it sit in a landfill, only taking up space.

                                        DEMAND ANALYSIS

        For as large as the city of Tokyo is in population and sheer size, the number of miles

traveled by the average person is not as large. Out of the 8 million people living in inner city

Tokyo, nearly all of them travel via subways and trains. Tokyo’s subway matrix is extremely

vast, cheap, and effective for pedestrian travel, making it a favorite for commuting. Every day

over 85% of people travel on subways in inner city Tokyo, and the yearly number of travelers is

a staggering 3.01 billion people – the highest number of people who travel by subway in the

world. The abundance of subway travel lowers the number of people needing transportation in

Tokyo from 8 million to around 1.5 million. In addition, there are around 1 million citizens under

the driving age, lowering the number of possible drivers to around 500,000 people. Furthermore,

Tokyo is a city so compact that owning a car is too costly in many areas including the price of a

car, insurance, space requirement, and difficulty of traveling through the inner city. These

disadvantages have led Tokyo to become very similar to New York City, which is ten times

larger than Tokyo. Nearly everyone who lives in the inner city works in another area of the city,
eliminating the need for a personal car and raising the demand for taxis, public buses, bicycles,

mopeds, and most commonly traveling on foot. With all of these alternatives in mind, it is

reasonable to assume that more than half of the people who do not take public transportation will

walk, take a taxi, or take a bus to their destination. This leaves us with an estimated 200,000 cars

owned and driven by citizens in Tokyo, Japan that must be supplied with hydrogen fuel. While

200,000 people may own cars in the city, they are not used extensively. Being a very compact

city at about 19 miles in diameter, it is estimated that the average driver will only travel an

average of 10 miles per day, translating to be about 100 miles per week maximum.

       As for public transportation, there are about 50,000 taxis owned by the city. However,

only about 10,000 are operated on a daily basis to accommodate the public demand. This moves

the total number of vehicles requiring hydrogen fuel at 700 barr pressure to 210,000 cars. Taxis

also travel more per day, approximately 50 miles a day. Since taxis operate every day of the

week in a similar manner, we approximate the number of miles traveled per week to be about

350 miles per taxi.

       Buses are the cheapest means of transportation in Tokyo, but are also the least

convenient. For such a large city, the number of buses is not nearly high enough to meet

demands because of the physical design of the city. Buses are generally too large to be useful in

Tokyo, which is why they are not as abundant as subways or taxis. In addition, the buses stop

running at around 10:00 pm every night, leaving many late-night citizens looking for

transportation. Because of these disadvantages, the number of buses in Tokyo is estimated to be

about 300 buses that would require fueling of 350 Barr hydrogen and clean natural gas (HCNG).

Buses travel in similar patterns as taxis except nights, so we estimate the number of miles
traveled by the average bus in inner city Tokyo to be about 200 miles per week, or around 30

miles per day. Now we can calculate the total number of miles for cars and buses each day:

                    200,000 cars X 10 miles per day = 2 million miles per day

                    10,000 taxis X 50 miles per week = 500,000 miles per day

                          = 2.5 million miles per day for small vehicles

         300 buses X 30 miles per day = 9,000 miles per day for HNCG fueled vehicles

       With these numbers in mind, we can calculate the number of fuel needed to satisfy the

needs of the city. First we will consider the smaller, 700 Barr vehicles. If we assume that each

car utilizes a 5 kg fueling tank, and that each engine running on hydrogen has an efficiency of 40

miles per kg, we calculate the total mileage of 200 miles per car until refueling. If each car

travels 10-15 miles per day, we predict that each car will need to refuel less than once per week,

and that each taxi will have to refuel every 2 days (which includes idle time in traffic and waiting

for customers). Now, we can calculate the number of cars, on average, that will need to be

refueled per day in Tokyo:

              200,000 cars / 10 days between fueling per car = 20,000 cars per day

               10,000 taxis / 2 days between fueling per taxi = 1,000 taxis per day

                                    = 21,000 total cars per day

       Since we now have the total number of cars that need to be supplied per day, we can

calculate the number of kilograms needed to fuel these cars per day by multiplying by 5

kilograms (maximum capacity per car):
               21,000 cars X 5 kg per car = 105,000 kg H2 (700 Barr) per day for cars

          For HCNG demand for buses, we assume that each bus has a 30 kg tank and that the

efficiency of the engine is about 10 miles per gallon, meaning the total mileage of a fully fueled

bus is about 300 miles. We calculated the miles per day to be about 30, meaning each bus would

need to be refueled once in about 10 days. Thus, the number of buses needing to be fueled per

day is:

                    300 buses/ 10 days between fueling per bus = 30 buses per day

              With this number we can determine the amount of HCNG needed per day:

                          30 buses X 30 kg per bus = 900 kg HCNG per day

          For such a large city, the number of cars and buses that would need to be supplied with

hydrogen fuel and HCNG is much less than anticipated because of the enormous reliance upon

subways. These calculations prove that Tokyo would be a good candidate for a hydrogen fueling


          The city of Tokyo, Japan is one of the most technically inclined cities in the world. In

addition to its efficiency, some of Tokyo’s main goals are to reduce emissions, improve the

quality of living, and maintain its reputation as one of the smartest cities on the globe. To do this,

citizens have already taken it upon themselves to take less harmful methods of transportation like

walking, bicycling, and taking the electric subways. By switching to hydrogen fueled cars and

buses, Tokyo would be able to apply its knowledge and enthusiasm to hydrogen car designs in

order to make better cars and fueling techniques. As of today, most of the brainpower in Tokyo
is focused towards ways to eliminate the car. With a hydrogen-powered car, the focus can be

redirected towards cars once again, inspiring new designs and opportunities.

       Tokyo is located in a similar climate zone as here in Pennsylvania, meaning it has four

seasons. For obvious reasons, there will be less travel by automobile and more travel via walking

and biking during the warmer climate, meaning less demand for hydrogen fuel. However, in the

winter season, there will be a greater demand for hydrogen and HCNG fuel to accommodate for

citizens wanting a warmer alternative of travel.

                               Preliminary Concept Development

         In such congested area like Tokyo, practicability and productivity are crucial to the

sustainability of the city. As a new idea involving the improvement of society’s way of living

emerges, so does a decisive process of selection. In the attempt to clear the sky and less

compromised natural resources, our team took on the task to build hydrogen-fueling stations in

Tokyo. This was, however, only the beginning of a challenging goal. The idea is there, but would

it be practical enough to meet the needs of a community with no room for error? Keeping this

question in mind, we went ahead and carefully analyzed our sources of power to enable the

production of hydrogen.

       Upon energy sources identification, a concept screening table was developed to compare

them among each other. Options selected were solar panels, landfill/sewage, wind, hydroelectric,

and biomass power. Each energy source description was elaborated using solar energy as a

reference and a selection of criteria composed of space required, safety, efficiency, maintenance,

cost of production, abundance, and ease of construction. Although the climate conditions favored

wind power turbines in the city of our choice, because of the limited open space and high cost of
manufacturing of the service, this option was easily dropped. Biomass is an excellent form of

renewable energy. Unfortunately, once analyzed we came to the conclusion that it would not be

as practical in a jungle of concrete due to the lack of plant material and animal waste.

       Focusing on effective utilization of water resource, hydroelectric power clearly became a

practical solution. Because of potential rivers with high drop in elevation nearby, the only things

left to worry about is production and maintenance of hydroelectric dams. Once the dam is fully

constructed, electrical power is produced by letting water go through the water intake. Then

gravity causes water to fall through the penstock. Once it reaches the turbine propeller, it is

turned by the moving liquid. The shaft from the turbine goes into the generator, where electricity

production takes place. The power is finally carried by power lines.

       Solar energy has been used by humanity since ancient times. Unlike oil or gas, the ever-

evolving energy source has unlimited supply. Therefore, is a convenient method to produce

electricity in a city with such an escalating demand. Solar panels could be installed in the roofs

of the hydrogen stations. When the sun rays strike the panels, solar cells, or photovoltaic cells

absorb the sun’s light. Then the energy is send to the inverter where solar radiation is converted

into electrical power, which would be used to propel the hydrogen stations. Any extra electricity

produced could be sold to a utility company.

With an extremely large population comes excessive tons of waste, produced in a short period of

time. This is why Landfill/Sewage energy is a realistic idea to put into testing. The way it works

is Landfill gas is composed of approximately 50% methane and 50% carbon dioxide and is

produced by the decomposition of organic waste under anaerobic conditions. Due to the constant

production of landfill gas, the increase in pressure within the landfill (together with differential
diffusion) causes the gas's release into the atmosphere. Once the gas is in the atmosphere it is

maneuverable by humans.

                                 Detailed Concept Description

Inspired by the traditional and effective set up of a gas station, our hydrogen was formed. As you

can see in the picture above, on the upper left corner, there is a compressor which leads to

storage underground. Also, because of the different needs and dimensions of a regular vehicle

and a public transportation unit, we designed a specific pump exclusively for buses. On the

central area there are six pumps ready to propel personal vehicles. Last but not least, a store is

located on the right side of the sketch. We figured Hydrogen fueling would take about 10

minutes, therefore, by having a nearby and convenient for customers to spend some extra money

while their car is being rehydrated for another day on the road.
                                 Detailed Concept Description

Above, the schematic is shown displaying the process of both, the production and the fueling of

the hydrogen in the station. This shows both the flow of energy from renewable energy sources

as well as the flow of hydrogen from its production to its fueling.
H2 compressor system, 350 bar             costcomp,350 = $ [ 180,000 * (0.3 kg/min)0.6 ] = $87,406

H2 storage system, 350 bar              costH2 storage,350 = $ [ 38000 * (350 kg)0.6 ] = $1,277,099

H2 dispenser system, 350 bar
                                                 costH2 disp,350 = $50,000

H2 compressor system, 700 bar

                                        costcomp,700= $ [ 260000 * (0.5 kg/min)0.6 ] = $171,536

Cooling block/chiller system, 700 bar
                                                 costcooling,700 = $ [ 90000 * (0.5 kg/min)0.6 ] = $59,378

H2 dispenser system, 700 bar                costH2 disp,700 = $60,000

Land                                    Cost land = $50/m2 * 1200 m2 = $60,000

Buildings                           Cost buildings = $3000/m2 * 1200*m^2 = $3,600,000

Total                                      costtotal   = $5,365,419
                                 Profit Calculation and Cost To consumer

              Discount rate                                       5.00%
              First Cost                                $2,682,709,500
              Annual Cost                                   $10,000,000
              Number of units sold annually                  38,653,500
              Cost per Unit                                      $11.00
                                                    Annual Income per
   Year          First Cost       Annual Cost              Unit
         0    $2,682,709,500       $10,000,000            $425,188,500
         1                          $9,523,810            $404,941,429
         2                          $9,070,295            $385,658,503
         3                          $8,638,376            $367,293,813
         4                          $8,227,025            $349,803,631
         5                          $7,835,262            $333,146,315
         6                          $7,462,154            $317,282,205
         7                          $7,106,813            $302,173,529
         8                          $6,768,394            $287,784,313
         9                          $6,446,089            $274,080,298
        10                          $6,139,133            $261,028,855
     NPV      $2,682,709,500       $87,217,349          $3,708,381,392
  Profit %                                                        33.9%


          In conclusion, our goal was to design a hydrogen fueling station that provided fuel to

automobiles in a more efficient, environmentally friendly way than fossil fuels (gasoline,

petroleum, etc). Our team decided to design this fueling station for Tokyo, Japan because of the

vast population that will need to be efficiently fueled, and its surrounding environment for

renewable energy. The hydrogen that will be fueling the automobiles will be generated from

hydroelectric energy and landfill/sewage energy. This sufficient energy is in abundance in

Tokyo, based on the water supply from the Tokyo Bay and the large amount of waste produced

by the city. The hydrogen will then be transported by trucks to the fueling stations. The fuel

will be stored under the stations beneath the ground. The fueling stations will be powered by

solar energy. Large solar panels will be placed on top of the fueling stations to supply plenty of
renewable energy. For the convenience of the customers, since it would take slightly longer to

fuel a vehicle, there would be a various forms of entertainment while the customer’s automobile

is being fueled.

                When transporting the fuel, we made sure there was a high value on sustaining

safety for the city and the people of Tokyo. The tanks that the trucks are transporting from the

production site to the fueling station are protected from seeping or leaking out to the city. The

tanks also protect the fuel from the natural inequalities of the roadways. The nature of the

roadways are not always smooth all the time, but the way the tanks are secured and positioned,

the fuel will stay in a “calm” state.

        We learned many things while completely this design project. The first thing we learned

was the various ways H2 and HCNG can be produced. Natural gas reforming, hydroelectric,

gasification, and renewable electrolysis are just a few of many. Obviously above, our group

decided to use the hydroelectric method. We also learned of the different ways to supply energy

to the fuel station. Solar, wind, landfill/waste, are just a few, and as seen above in the report, our

group chose to use solar energy to supply sufficient energy to the fueling station. Lastly, we

learned how to approximately calculate each aspect of designing a fueling station that can fuel

automobile more efficiently. Finding the population of the specific city, and then approximating

the number of cars in that city were found. Then finding the amount of fuel that will be needed

per day to each automobile was found. Even the costs of the buildings and the processing

(compressing, storing, compressing, etc) were calculated. This design project was a great

experience for all of us, and in the near future we hope that this can become a reality.

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