Towards safer hydrogen refuelling stations: insights from computational fluid dynamics on LH₂ leakage

Ashi Chauhan, Hengrui Liu, Javad Mohammadpour, Rouzbeh Abbassi, Fatemeh Salehi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Scaling hydrogen as a key clean energy carrier necessitates a comprehensive understanding of the safety aspects of hydrogen including liquid hydrogen (LH₂). Hence, this study presents a detailed computational fluid mechanics analysis to explore accidental LH₂ leakage and dispersion in a hydrogen refuelling station under varied conditions which is essential to prevent fire and explosion. The correlated impact of influential parameters including wind direction, wind velocity, leak direction, and leak rate were analysed. The study shows that hydrogen dispersion is significantly impacted by the combined effect of wind direction and surrounding structures. Additionally, the leak rate and leak direction have a significant effect on the development of the flammable cloud volume (FCV), which is critical for estimating the explosion hazards. Increasing wind velocity from 2 to 4 m/s at a constant leak rate of 0.06 kg/s results in an 82% reduction in FCV. The minimum FCV occurs when leak and wind directions oppose at 4 m/s. The most critical situation concerning FCV arises when the leak and wind directions are perpendicular, with a leak rate of 0.06 kg/s and a wind velocity of 2 m/s. These findings can aid in the development of optimised sensing and monitoring systems and operational strategies to reduce the risk of catastrophic fire and explosion consequences.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105355
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2024

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2024. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • Hydrogen refuelling station
  • Safety measures
  • Liquid hydrogen
  • Computational fluid dynamics (CFD)
  • Flammable cloud volume


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