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New Measure for Promoting Dissemination of Fuel Cell Vehicles-METI to revise the technical standards for compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems to harmonize with gtr on Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Vehicles established by the UNECE-

On May 30, 2014, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) will revise the Fuel Container Safety Rules (Ordinance of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry No. 50 of 1966; hereinafter referred to as the “Rules”) based on the High Pressure Gas Safety Act (Act No. 204 of 1951; hereinafter referred to as the “Act”), as well as revise the Public Notice to Provide the Details of Labels, etc., based on the Fuel Container Safety Rules and the Process of Re-inspection of Containers (Notice of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry No. 150 of 1997; hereinafter referred to as the “Notice”). The revision aims to introduce the gtr on Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Vehicles in Japan, as a part of METI’s preparatory actions for launching full-fledged dissemination of fuel cell vehicles in 2015.

It is expected that the revision will further contribute to healthy dissemination of fuel cell vehicles and other related technology through harmonizing the domestic technical standards for storage containers and their accessories used in hydrogen vehicles and fuel cell vehicles with global standards.

1. Background and outline

On the premise of the secured safety of fuel cell vehicles, METI has been revising various kinds of technical standards, aiming at launching the full-fledged dissemination of the vehicles and hydrogen filling stations in 2015.

As a part of the global efforts for setting a technical standard for hydrogen and fuel cell vehicles, in 2007, the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) inaugurated the World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations (WP.29), aiming to formulate gtr on Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Vehicles, based on the Agreement Concerning the Establishing of Global Technical Regulations for Wheeled Vehicles, Equipment and Parts which can be Fitted and/or be Used on Wheeled Vehicles (Notice of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs No. 474 of 2000), which was formulated in Geneva in 1998, and it finally established the gtr in 2013.

On May 30, 2014, METI will revise the Rules based on the Act as well as the Notice, for the purpose of introducing the GTRs in the domestic standards.

2. Major revisions

Revisions related to the Rules

1) Based on the definition of storage containers for filling the storage containers for fuels systems with compressed hydrogen, as stipulated in the gtr, such storage containers are to be defined as “international compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems” and stipulated in the Rules as such.

2) The maximum filling pressure concerning the international compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems is to be defined as “a figure which represents the maximum pressure of the gas applied to the container during filling it with the fuel, and which represents a pressure corresponding to five-fourths of the nominal working pressure, which is stipulated in the following provision.”

3) The nominal working pressure concerning the international compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems is to be defined as “a figure which represents the reference pressure indicating operating characteristics in using a container fully filled with compressed hydrogen at a temperature of 15 degrees Celsius.”

4) The pressure of Proof Pressure Test concerning the international compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems is to be defined as “a figure which represents a pressure corresponding to six-fifths of the maximum pressure.”

5) The symbol to be stamped on international compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems is determined to be “GVH.”

Revision related to the Notice

6) When the external inspection and leakage test are conducted as a part of the inspection of the international compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems, the same criteria as those of compressed hydrogen storage containers for vehicle fuel systems are to be applied.

For further details, see the Japanese language press release.

Release Date

May 30, 2014

Division in Charge

High Pressure Gas Safety Office, Distribution and Industrial Safety Policy Group

Related Information

Industrial Safety
 
Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
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