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CNL Awards of Excellence/Distinguished Merit Award: Launch of the Canadian Hydrogen Safety Centre

Distinguished Merit Award: Launch of the Canadian Hydrogen Safety Centre

Alison Jones, Helmut Fritzsche, Ian Castillo, Kanchan Dutta, Kim Beres, Lee Gardner, Marco Bazelatto, Nirmal Gnanapragasam, Sam Suppiah, Steve McGee, and Zhe Liang

For the work on the nation-wide organization of the Hydrogen Safety Workshop and launching of the Canadian Hydrogen Safety Centre. 

Hydrogen is a key enabler for decarbonisation as countries pledge to reach net zero emissions by 2050. As more industries and market sectors start using hydrogen and, as a result, expanding hydrogen infrastructure, there is imperative need to have a more coherent approach on hydrogen safety (i.e., robust and standard safety practices, technical solutions to the existing challenges of working with hydrogen, codes and standards for rapid hydrogen deployment).

In response to that need, CNL, in collaboration with AECL, successfully hosted a Nation-wide Hydrogen Safety Workshop in Ottawa, Ontario on November 24. On November 25, 2022, a tour of the hydrogen and materials science facilities at Chalk River Laboratories was also organized.

The aim of the workshop was to identify the emerging needs of the Canadian hydrogen safety landscape, as well as the key issues affecting the progress of hydrogen deployment in Canada. Furthermore, this event served to showcase CNL’s capabilities and leadership on hydrogen research and development to the hydrogen and nuclear communities. A total of 68 Canadian and international attendees, including technology developers, industry associations, government officials, regulatory agencies, national laboratories, universities, and service providers, participated in the workshop. The event was described by the attendees as impactful as a venue to consolidate all relevant Canadian stakeholders to initiate a much needed discussion for the country. The key insights from the workshop across issues, capabilities, gaps, and actions were documented in a consolidated report that was then distributed to the participants after the workshop.

From the findings of the workshop, the concept of the Canadian Hydrogen Safety Centre was created. The Centre concept was launched at the Hydrogen Convention held in Edmonton in April 2023. The purpose of the Canadian Hydrogen Safety Centre (CH2SC) is to help industries that are new to hydrogen with a safe adoption of hydrogen as a fuel, as an energy carrier, and as a feedstock, through development of tangible safety solutions. The solution development is aimed at a new hydrogen industry that is growing up beyond the traditional and proprietary boundaries of the current hydrogen industry – the gas producers and handlers. This will help with wider adoption of hydrogen in as many industries as possible, and in time, the expectation is that the established hydrogen industry will also participate.