Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : Strengthening of the European supply chain for compressed storage systems for transport applications

Topic identifier: FCH-01-3-2018
Publication date: 16 January 2018

Types of action: FCH2-RIA Research and Innovation action
Opening date:
16 January 2018
Deadline: 24 April 2018 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Societal Challenges
Work Programme Year: H2020-JTI-FCH-2018
Work Programme Part: H2020-JTI-FCH-2018
Topic Updates
  • 20 August 2018 17:58

    An overview of the evaluation results (flash call info) is now available under the "Additional Documents" section of each topic page.

  • 16 January 2018 00:00

    - Under "scope", the first bullet point should read: "The storage density of the system at room temperature should be at least  0.03Kg/L for 700bar or 0.018Kg/L for 350bar".

    - Under "Expected Impact", the 5th bullet point should read: "Volumetric capacity: 0.03Kg/L for 700bar or 0.018Kg/L for 350bar;"

Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Compressed hydrogen tanks are a high-value component of strategic importance for the rollout of fuel cell mobility, but with few suppliers. They could constitute a multibillion market once hydrogen mobility matures and could offer a substantial economic opportunity for Europe. While companies with the background and skills to produce high-pressure tanks do exist in Europe, tank manufacture is currently a bottleneck in the European vehicle supply chain, in particular for buses.
The challenge behind this topic lies therefore in strengthening the European supply chain for compressed hydrogen storage for transport applications by driving competition among various players, which should lead to cost reduction and improved technical performance.
While similar projects have been financed in the past, it is necessary to broaden the number of players (Tier 1 and 2 suppliers) able to develop, produce, test, certify and commercialize the vessels and ancillary hydrogen storage systems, contribute to PNR and RCS development thus creating a market ready competitive environment and cost reduction. To this end the following technical areas challenges are fundamental as regards hydrogen tanks:

  1. Achievement of the application specific (e.g. automotive, rail, maritime, bus, trucks, aeronautic, etc.) performance and cost targets for a broader market introduction. This is mainly due to intensive carbon fibre use (quantity, quality and hence cost), conventional manufacturing processes and architectural concepts that are not compatible with mass production. To tackle this challenge, significant advances with respect to mechanical reinforcement, composite architectural architecture optimization and improved designs of composite overwrapped pressure vessels (COPV) with respect to cost, performance and manufacturing productivity are required.
  2. Hydrogen refuelling times truly comparable to those of conventional fuels require an extended temperature range of the COPV. This would also greatly improve the safety margins with respect to over temperature overshoot caused by possible malfunctions of the refuelling station. Likewise, being able to extract the maximum hydrogen mass flow independent regardless of the state of charge (SOC) calls for the ability of the COPV and the complete refuelling system to withstand and/or operate at lower temperatures.
  3. Improvement of the intrinsic safety of COPV with respect to the worst-case scenario of TPRD (Thermally Activated Pressure Relief Device) malfunction within fire conditions.

Given the scope of past projects financed by the FCH 2 JU, the topic is open to all transport applications.
The following should fall into the scope of the project:

  • Development of new and/or optimized tank geometries having the same storage performance and providing an enhanced integration in vehicle application space at a comparable price. The storage density of the system at room temperature should be at least 0.03Kg/lL for 700bar or 0.018Kg/lL for 350bar. The cost target for the whole system for a production of 30,000 parts per year basis should be 400€/kg H2 or less;
  • Improve filling and venting tolerance of COPV (e.g. enhanced liner materials and multi-material assembling materials and techniques to increase mechanical and temperature tolerance (e.g. real -40°C H2 filling, - 60°C cold filling, +100⁰C);
  • Development and validation of numerical tools (probabilistic models) to perform automatic or semi-automatic optimization of COPV performance and durability and reduce cost and manufacturing discrepancies;
  • Provide technical and performance validation of prototypes with respect to EU standards (e.g. EC79);
  • Improved safety stemming from demonstration of leak-before-burst vessel designs and fire detection and protection concepts;
  • For protection against the worst-case scenario of the failure of the TPRD, a leak-before-burst vessel design should be developed. In this connection, the failure mechanism of the vessel should be studied and the reliability demonstrated. Furthermore, systems for detecting localized fires, and efficient enhanced fire protection systems/strategies as well as additional security measures are to be evaluated;

TRL at start: 4 and TRL at end: 6.
The proposal is expected to include at least one vessel and/or material supplier, one research institute and an OEM, such that the full supply chain is represented and works towards end customer targets. It is also expected to build on experience from past projects in the field (at national or European level) in order to push the most promising materials and technologies to a higher TRL/MRL.
Any safety-related event that may occur during execution of the project shall be reported to the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) dedicated mailbox, which manages the European hydrogen safety reference database, HIAD.
Test activities should collaborate and use the protocols developed by the JRC Harmonisation Roadmap (see section 3.2.B "Collaboration with JRC – Rolling Plan 2018"), in order to benchmark performance of components and allow for comparison across different projects.

The FCH 2 JU considers that proposals requesting a contribution of EUR 2.7 million would allow the specific challenges to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.
A maximum of 1 project may be funded under this topic.
Expected duration: 3-4 years

Expected Impact:
  • Coherent strategy defining the ultimate weight/cost savings achievable with conventional COPV and/or novel geometries and/or novel architecture strategies providing the best trade-off;
  • Improved filling/venting tolerance of storage systems (temperature range: -60°C to +100°C) to sustain fast-filling and unrestricted extraction;
  • Strengthen the European COPV development and supply chain;
  • The following KPIs are expected to be reached at storage system level in compliance with the MAWP:
  • Volumetric capacity: 0.03Kg/lL for 700bar or .0.18Kg/lL for 350bar;
  • Gravimetric capacity: 5,3%;
  • Cost target for a production of 30,000 parts per year basis: 450€/kg H2;

Type of action: Research and Innovation Action
The conditions related to this topic are provided in the chapter 3.3 and in the General Annexes to the Horizon 2020 Work Programme 2018– 2020 which apply mutatis mutandis.

Topic conditions and documents

1.   Eligible countries: described in Annex A of the H2020 main Work Programme.

      A number of non-EU/non-Associated Countries that are not automatically eligible for funding have made specific provisions for making funding available for their participants in Horizon 2020 projects. See the information in the Online Manual.


2.   Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in Annex B and Annex C of the H2020 main Work Programme.

 The following exception applies (see 'chapter 3.3. Call management rules' from the FCH2 JU 2018 Work Plan and specific topic description):

- "For all Innovation Actions, an additional eligibility criterion has been introduced to limit the FCH 2 JU requested contribution"

     Proposal page limits and layout: Please refer to Part B of the proposal template in the submission tool below.


3.   Evaluation:

  • Evaluation criteria, scoring and thresholds are described in Annex H of the H2020 main Work Programme.
  • Submission and evaluation processes are described in the Online Manual.

4.   Indicative time for evaluation and grant agreement:
      Information on the outcome of evaluation: maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
      Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.


5.   Proposal templates, evaluation forms and model grant agreements (MGA):

FCH JU Research and Innovation Action (FCH-RIA)

Specific rules and funding rates
Proposal templates are available after entering the submission tool below.
Standard evaluation form
FCH JU MGA - Multi-Beneficiary
H2020 Annotated Grant Agreement

FCH JU Innovation Action (FCH-IA)

Specific rules and funding rates
Proposal templates are available after entering the submission tool below.
Standard evaluation form
FCH JU MGA - Multi-Beneficiary
H2020 Annotated Grant Agreement

FCH JU Coordination and Support Action (FCH-CSA)

Specific rules and funding rates
Proposal templates are available after entering the submission tool below.
Standard evaluation form
FCH JU MGA - Multi-Beneficiary
H2020 Annotated Grant Agreement


6.   Additional requirements:

      Horizon 2020 budget flexibility
      Classified information
      Technology readiness levels (TRL)
      Financial support to Third Parties

Members of consortium are required to conclude a consortium agreement, in principle prior to the signature of the grant agreement.

7.   Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions.

Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved.

Open access to research data
The Open Research Data Pilot has been extended to cover all Horizon 2020 topics for which the submission is opened on 26 July 2016 or later. Projects funded under this topic will therefore by default provide open access to the research data they generate, except if they decide to opt-out under the conditions described in Annex L of the H2020 main Work Programme. Projects can opt-out at any stage, that is both before and after the grant signature.

Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they plan to open or share their data, and will not be penalised for opting out.

Open research data sharing applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan.

Projects need to create a Data Management Plan (DMP), except if they opt-out of making their research data open access. A first version of the DMP must be provided as an early deliverable within six months of the project and should be updated during the project as appropriate. The Commission already provides guidance documents, including a template for DMPs. See the Online Manual.

Eligibility of costs: costs related to data management and data sharing are eligible for reimbursement during the project duration.

The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.

8.   Additional documents

FCH JU Work Plan
FCH2 JU Multi Annual Work Plan 
FCH2 JU – Regulation of establishment
H2020 Regulation of Establishment
H2020 Rules for Participation
H2020 Specific Programme

Additional documents

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