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Monitoring systems for hydrogen power in transport

SafeHPower: Continuous monitoring systems for the safe storage, distribution and usage of hydrogen power for transport


Hydrogen (H2 ) is the most promising replacement fuel for road transport due to its abundance, efficiency, low carbon footprint and the absence of other harmful emissions. It needs to be stored at high pressure which means high risk and safety issues during storage and transport. Tank rupture could lead to catastrophic accidents and loss of life. The mass producers of hydrogen vehicles will need to convince customers of their safety in order for hydrogen power to take off. The SMEs participating in this project have proposed a new technology which will be able to inspect the material of the tanks, detect any defects that could lead to rupture or cracking and warn of the immediate danger before an accident occurs. The goal of the SafeHPower system is the reliable and cost effective continuous monitoring of the integrity of hydrogen storage tanks at central depots, service stations and on vehicles ie at every point of hydrogen storage.


  • Development of a low cost acoustic emission (AE) sensor attached to a hydrogen storage tank in a vehicle for continuous monitoring
  • Development of a higher level AE system for continuous monitoring of hydrogen storage tanks installed at service stations and production plants
  • Development of a tangential neutron radiography system for total imaging of metal tank structures at all points.


This project aims to address the need for safe hydrogen storage tanks by developing innovative technologies for monitoring the creation and growth of fatigue cracks and will provide the capability to intervene before accidents occur. This will be a significant improvement on existing hydrogen monitoring technologies based on gas sensing which can only detect leaks near a sensor so that total area coverage of a hydrogen vessel is both impractical and expensive. Gas sensing technologies do not detect defects which could potentially cause catastrophic rupture without causing prior leakage of gas as a symptom.

For more information, please visit the SafeHPower website.

Meet the Principal Investigator(s) for the project

Professor Tat-Hean Gan
Professor Tat-Hean Gan - Professional Qualifications CEng. IntPE (UK), Eur Ing BEng (Hons) Electrical and Electronics Engg (Uni of Nottingham) MSc in Advanced Mechanical Engineering (University of Warwick) MBA in International Business (University of Birmingham) PhD in Engineering (University of Warwick) Languages English, Malaysian, Mandarin, Cantonese Professional Bodies Fellow of the British Institute of NDT Fellow of the Institute of Engineering and Technology Tat-Hean Gan has 10 years of experience in Non-Destructive Testing (NDT), Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) and Condition Monitoring of rotating machineries in various industries namely nuclear, renewable energy (eg Wind, Wave ad Tidal), Oil and Gas, Petrochemical, Construction and Infrastructure, Aerospace and Automotive. He is the Director of BIC, leading activities varying from Research and development to commercialisation in the areas of novel technique development, sensor applications, signal and image processing, numerical modelling and electronics hardware. His experience is also in Collaborative funding (EC FP7 and UK TSB), project management and technology commercialisation.

Related Research Group(s)

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Project last modified 12/10/2023