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Author: rusty

Author: rusty


Hydrogen Fuel Systems

Here, Luxfer Gas Cylinders interrogates the key questions surrounding hydrogen adoption for the transport sector.

Why is hydrogen hard to transport?

Moving hydrogen from where it is produced, to where is it needed is one of the biggest barriers to using the clean fuel to help decarbonise the transport sector. 

While natural gas is distributed via a network of pipelines to homes and businesses, reaching into parts of the UK and Europe, hydrogen has no such infrastructure in place yet. 

Building such a framework is a significant, costly and disruptive undertaking. Yet limited access to hydrogen will curtail its use, and therefore impact on the ability to meet the Net Zero targets governments have put into place. 

A ‘virtual gas pipeline’ is considered among the best options to plug the gap – with bulk gas transport modules comprised of hydrogen cylinders moving it using the existing road network or waterways. 

Alongside this, huge progress is being made within the transport sector to allow trucks, buses, trains, tractors, refuse trucks, road sweepers, boats and other vehicles and vessels – plus drones – to operate with hydrogen technology via hydrogen fuel systems. 

While battery electric is a cleaner, greener alternative to fossil fuels, it is not viable for all modes of transport, particularly for heavy industry, or where recharge will require excessive down time. 

How will hydrogen be transported?

Transporting hydrogen gas poses a challenge due to its unique properties. Hydrogen has a low energy density compared to other fossil fuels such as diesel. This means that a larger volume of hydrogen is required to provide the same amount of energy as other fuels. 

Alongside compressing the gas into high quality hydrogen cylinders, an alternative way to transport it is liquefaction. This is where hydrogen is cooled to a very low temperature of around -253°C, which transforms it into a liquid. This reduces the volume of hydrogen by a factor of up to 1,000. 

This option is being explored particularly in extreme environments and for applications where space is at a premium, such as air and marine sectors. 

Whereas natural gas is moved through pipelines, these would need to be specially designed and constructed for hydrogen, at significant cost. With uncertainty from government and investors on the role of hydrogen in the clean energy economy, ‘virtual’ gas pipeline solutions using high performance hydrogen cylinders are key to supporting adoption in the short to medium term.

Source: Mobility Innovation, 2022

Is transporting hydrogen dangerous?

Hydrogen is highly flammable and this means that ensuring safety of gas storage systems, and robust governance are fundamental. 

The regulatory landscape has been a limiting factor for hydrogen take-up, however the new global regulation UN ECE R134 is an important milestone. Luxfer Gas Cylinders has achieved this certification, demonstrating its hydrogen cylinders and hydrogen fuel systems are safe for use in hydrogen-powered vehicles, across a wide range of applications. 

Will hydrogen fuel take off in the transport sector?

The Hydrogen Council estimates that there will be 50,000 hydrogen-powered buses and 350,000 hydrogen-powered trucks on the world’s roads by 2030, with the UK among those countries helping to lead the way.

Two options to support hydrogen fuel for transport are being explored and invested in are fuel cell technology and conversions of combustion engines to work with hydrogen.

Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles harness the gas to generate electricity through a chemical reaction with oxygen in the fuel cell. The electricity generated powers an electric motor that propels the vehicle. 

An advantage of this kind of application is that the only by-product of the chemical reaction is water, making it a zero emissions technology. It also offers similar performance and range to conventional gasoline vehicles, with the added benefit of fast refuel times.

Buses, trucks and forklifts are being developed by a number of manufacturers, harnessing this technology, with Luxfer Gas Cylinders designing and supplying bespoke hydrogen fuel systems.

However, a challenge within the transport sector is that operators have in the past decade invested in assets powered by fossil fuel whose lifespan exceeds carbon reduction targets, such as train and ship builders. In this case, retrofitting as a route to embedding hydrogen technology is an appealing option.

At Luxfer Gas Cylinders, the ratio of design and engineering resource to conversions versus new build hydrogen systems is around 50/50, and this isn’t expected to change in the next few years.

The benefit of retrofitting is that it’s possible to convert battery electric or diesel engines to hydrogen fuel systems relatively quickly and bring a product to market within months. Meanwhile, it might take a major manufacturer three years to get a prototype hydrogen vehicle on the road.

Specifically, dual fuel combinations offer a medium-term solution that will wean operators from fossil fuels to clean gas, while providing a safety net that appeals to the heavy-duty transport sector.

Live projects Luxfer Gas Cylinders has lent its hydrogen fuel systems expertise to include:

  • A fleet of zero-emission refuse trucks with Netherlands and Belgium-based sustainable vehicle manufacturer E-Trucks Europe
  • The UK’s first mass produced hydrogen-electric truck, in a historic milestone with Tevva Hydrogen Electric Trucks
  • Taking hydrogen to the skies via drone technology with Intelligent Energy
  • The UK’s first hydrogen train, HydroFLEX, which was showcased at COP26 in Glasgow
  • The Hydrocat 48 – the world’s first hydrogen-powered Crew Transfer Vessel (CTV), featuring a 27-cylinder dual fuel system, which meets demand from wind farm operators to be as green as possible by reducing the emissions of their daily operation by up to 80%.

What is impacting hydrogen adoption?

The widespread adoption of hydrogen is hinged on the development of fuelling infrastructure and availability of the gas, with companies and investors seeking reassurance on the role of this gas in order to realise the huge potential of hydrogen to decarbonise the transport sector.

As a world-leading cylinder manufacturer, with an 80-year legacy in gas storage and more than 20 years of experience providing hydrogen fuel systems, Luxfer is proud to be partnering with organisations that are innovating in this space.

Operators in this market are seeking lightweight and higher pressure solutions, alongside reliability and safety, which are cornerstones of Luxfer Gas Cylinders’ products.

To learn more about the alternative fuel solutions available contact: 


Innovating with hydrogen cylinders for aviation

While road transportation has made significant strides in adopting cleaner fuels, the aviation industry still grapples with reducing its carbon emissions.  Estimated to contribute around 2.5% of global carbon emissions, the sector is being urged to hit 'Jet Zero' by 2050.  The opportunities to explore hydrogen cylinders for aviation are being interrogated, with Luxfer Gas Cylinders supporting companies who are making progress towards greener air travel.

Among the challenges being navigated is the limited technology for making hydrogen dense enough for aerospace application. The factors that have impacted scale up of the clean gas in other sectors like maritime as well, include: 

Fuel density: Replacing jet fuel with a less dense alternative like hydrogen is a significant hurdle. Jet fuel is quick to refill, doesn't take up much space, and has high gravimetric efficiency (energy output relative to weight).

Hydrogen density: To make hydrogen a feasible option for large passenger aircraft, its low density needs to be addressed. Hydrogen in gaseous form is up to 1,000 times less dense than jet fuel.

Embedding hydrogen cylinders to fly smaller aircrafts

For hydrogen to make its mark in the aviation industry, embedding its use in smaller aircrafts is a crucial step. Luxfer has been leading this change, partnering with UK-based ZeroAvia to develop hydrogen-electric engines, strategically integrating hydrogen cylinders within them. ZeroAvia's efforts in developing commercially-viable fuel cell technology have been noteworthy, with plans for an emissions-free 80-seater aircraft flying up to 1,000 nautical miles by 2027. The company is one example of pioneers in this space, which will break ground for cleaner air journeys.

Another significant opportunity lies in short-hop travel, where hydrogen can power planes carrying up to 20 passengers over a few hundred miles – and there are tens of thousands of these kinds of aircraft, from players such as Cessna and Piper. This could be a game-changer for connecting regional airports to larger transport hubs.

The challenges of using hydrogen within larger aircrafts

Despite the recent success of hydrogen in powering small aircraft, the translation of these concepts to larger aircraft presents its own set of challenges. Among the possibilities:

Liquid hydrogen: Liquid hydrogen could present a workable option for larger aircrafts where space is at a premium. Big corporations are investigating the feasibility of this, however, liquifying hydrogen is costly, and it requires extremely low storage temperatures to maintain its liquid state.

Hybrid solutions: Collaborations with companies like CMB.TECH, which focuses on hybrid solutions, could provide a path forward. By integrating a small amount of aircraft fuel with hydrogen, the overall emissions can be significantly reduced.Although currently in its infancy, within a decade or perhaps even five years it’s viable that hydrogen technology will have developed sufficiently to meet long haul, high-capacity air travel needs.

The path to hydrogen-powered flight

Despite holding promise, the aviation industry is tightly regulated, and significant technical and regulatory progress is required to mainstream hydrogen usage.There are two key considerations that will affect the future for hydrogen in aerospace:

Regulatory approval: Test aircraft using hydrogen will need to clock many hours to get regulatory approval from authorities like the UK's Civil Aviation Authority or the US's Federal Aviation Authority. 

Future prospects: While it's estimated that commercialising hydrogen for aircraft may be at least five years away, rapid advancements could significantly speed up adoption – and this is a fast-changing landscape. It will be driven by manufacturers who are willing to invest in the technology and work with the relevant classification bodies to make it viable. 

Source: Intelligent Energy, 2022

The future: hydrogen-powered drones 

The drone industry is another exciting frontier for hydrogen-powered flight. Luxfer Gas Cylinders has supplied hydrogen cylinders to Intelligent Energy for around five years, supporting its product testing within fuel cell systems. Weight is critical in aerospace, and the team at Intelligent Energy has produced a very lightweight fuel cell. This offers the potential to extend flight times significantly, and decrease refuel windows, making hydrogen an attractive power source for this burgeoning market. However, safety remains paramount for cylinders in such environments, where temperature changes and unstable conditions are common. In response, we supply Type 3 cylinder technology, as a robust solution.

Harnessing hydrogen for ground operations

In the broader scheme of aviation carbon reduction, the vehicles and equipment supporting ground operations around aircraft also play a significant role. These present another route for implementing hydrogen, and the developmental efforts required are less substantial compared to air-bound applications.

For example, ground equipment, like tugs, auxiliary generators, passenger buses that run around terminals and baggage vehicles could all be powered by hydrogen, thereby reducing the overall carbon footprint of the industry. Luxfer Gas Cylinders has partnered with a range of companies for these kinds of carbon-free solutions.

The infrastructure challenge remains a barrier however, with the transition to hydrogen requiring modifications to airport fuelling, storage, and handling procedures. Yet, these barriers are not insurmountable, as demonstrated by the budget airline easyJet's recent identification of hydrogen as a key element in its net-zero pathway. 

In addition, ZeroAvia has launched a partnership with Birmingham Airport (BHX), which aims to deliver the first hydrogen-powered domestic passenger journeys to Glasgow, Aberdeen, Belfast and Dublin in the next couple of years.

As the aerospace industry seeks reliable and safe solutions, Luxfer Gas Cylinders' trusted expertise in transporting gas in extreme environments – based on a legacy of decades in storage solutions - instils confidence. With the hydrogen revolution continuing at pace, operators will seek lightweight and high-pressure solutions – cornerstones of Luxfer's product range.

To find out more about Luxfer Gas Cylinders’ alternative fuel offering, visit:


Introducing the Luxfer G-Stor® Pro Bundle

Introducing a new virtual gas pipeline solution from industry leaders Luxfer Gas CylindersA unique transportation method for hydrogen - the G-Stor® Pro Bundle - builds new connections for sustainabilityIndustry demand for solutions to transport small to medium volumes of gas as part of a ‘virtual gas pipeline’ is behind the launch of the G-Stor® Pro Bundle from hydrogen storage experts Luxfer Gas Cylinders.Developed and ready for market within less than one year, the multiple-cylinder package (MCP) is a modular, interconnected system comprising Luxfer’s trusted Type 3 G-Stor® H2 cylinders, which are stacked horizontally and can deliver a larger volume of gas in a similar footprint to other available options.The solution answers the call for companies that are targeting cleaner and greener operations but are impacted by a lack of hydrogen infrastructure.Available in a nine-cylinder bundle, the containers allow for the supply of hydrogen to external pipelines and where a high volume of gas is required to be fed at a regular flow rate and pressure without an interruption.They offer a crucial stepping stone for industrial use such as for refineries, small scale H2 refuelling stations currently being used to power prototype vehicles, manufacturing sites, portable power generators – and more.Kevin Gilbert, Alternative Fuel Design Manager, explains: “The G-Stor® Pro Bundle was developed to support our customers in their adoption of clean, green fuel and this is a hugely important solution in the hydrogen supply chain.“The modular system is set in a lightweight, durable, high strength frame that can be slotted into an existing structure and onto trucks and trailers seamlessly. Because it features our lightweight and robust Type 3 cylinders, we can provide increased water volume and more gas capacity, which is key.”Luxfer Gas Cylinders has an 80-year legacy in gas containment and has a specialist - and expanding - alternative fuel facility at its Colwick, Nottingham base. With an impeccable safety record, it is responsible for supplying hydrogen fuel systems to international customers across the transport sector.Kevin adds: “Alternative fuel is a key market for us, and we’re constantly innovating to produce the most advanced technological solutions designed to help supply gas across the world.“While concurrently developing the means to support bulk gas transport requirements, we recognised that what the industry needs right now, to nurture hydrogen adoption, is small to medium storage options, and that’s where our G-Stor® Pro Bundle is ideal.”Five cylinder sizes are available, from 150 to 322 litres, with six variations of hydrogen storage capacity from 32.1kgs to 84.3kgs. For further information visit: on behalf of Luxfer Cylinders by The Tonic Communications. For more information contact or call 0115 8248254.


International Women’s Day 2023

This year’s focus for International Women’s Day is ‘Embrace Equity’, with a call for the global community to understand the difference between equality and equity. The 2023 campaign message is underpinned by the belief that championing equity is fundamental for creating an inclusive world, one which challenges bias, perceptions and gender stereotypes.

How is Luxfer Gas Cylinders driving the focus for diversity and equality?

As a global manufacturer, Luxfer Gas Cylinders recognizes its responsibilities for creating and maintaining a work environment in which people are treated with dignity and respect. The organisation is committed to nurturing an inclusive, honest, diverse team, and is passionate that there is core strength within its employees. 

Around 30% of Luxfer Group’s workforce is female and at Luxfer Gas Cylinders Europe in Nottingham, the number of female personnel has increased by around 45% in the previous three years (2019 – 2022).  Meanwhile, the quality of data gathered on diversity is improving so the business can more effectively monitor how it performs in this area. By knowing where the company stands currently, it can know where the growth and development areas are.  

Read the Luxfer Group Sustainability Report 2022 

Steps being taking across the company include:

  • At Luxfer Group a Leadership Development Program has recently launched which supports the development of emerging talent in the organization; providing the framework, environment, and opportunity for individuals to develop within the Luxfer community. 
  • Talent acquisition teams and hiring managers undergo training to ensure that a diverse slate of candidates is considered for all job openings. 
  • All personnel are required to complete a variety of anti-harassment, non-discrimination, and unconscious bias training annually. 
  • Luxfer Gas Cylinders' compensation philosophy aims to attract, retain, and motivate employees through incentive and benefit programs, which include family friendly policies. 
  • Full-time employees are offered opportunities to participate in the company’s various pension and retirement savings plans, fitness and wellness programs, healthy living incentives and mental health assistance.
  • The company also offers advanced maternity leave, plus shared parental leave, to encourage an inclusive workforce.

While the industry acknowledges there is still work to do, significant change takes time. Luxfer will continue to focus on enhancing the policies and practices in place to improve the representation of women at all levels - and hold itself accountable for driving that progress.

To mark International Women’s Day 2023, four female employees at Luxfer Gas Cylinders are sharing their personal experiences around the topic of equity in the workplace, diversity in the manufacturing and engineering industry, and their careers at Luxfer.

Embracing equity in the workplace with career development

Luxfer Gas Cylinders holds personal development as one of their key organisational values and this is reflected globally. Office and professional staff members are supported with personal and career growth plans reviewed regularly throughout the year. Staff under skills matrix employment are also provided with regular appraisals and supported with training and development.

Lucy: “In Nottingham we have a local leaders team, which is made up of department heads and individuals in the business. As a member of this team, I feel that Luxfer Gas Cylinders recognises talent and performance, irrespective of gender, and they demonstrate this through growth and development opportunities.” 

Emily: “I think it’s just a given that, regardless of your gender, your development opportunities are the same. That's certainly how I've always felt at this company. Every predecessor in my sales and operations role has been male, as far as I'm aware, but I don’t think this matters – the focus is on your skills and willingness to learn”.

Grace: “At Luxfer Gas Cylinders it’s good to see that females are being recognised for their contribution and promoted within the organisation. And it’s nice to have more people on the management team that are female”

Mikayla: “I’ve come a long way, career-wise, after only seven months at Luxfer. It’s such a welcoming environment – I can openly express my opinions and share ideas for improvements, and I believe the team really listens.”

Embracing equity in the industry with STEM education 

As leaders in the gas storage industry, Luxfer Gas Cylinders aims to develop a diverse and talented workforce, along with enhancing employment and recruitment practices to provide the most inclusive work environment possible. One of the key challenges faced across the engineering and manufacturing sector, is the limited diversity of the talent pool due to the traditional view of it being a male-dominant industry. Through STEM education, evolving female leaders in the industry and a consistent focus on diversity, we can grow and develop the talent pool. 

Mikayla: “There’s a very strong sentiment that Luxfer wants to continue to develop the industry and that’s evidenced by the team working closely with schools to educate children on how rewarding STEM careers can be. 

“In Calgary we have a team that volunteers at the Women in Need Society (WINS) too, which helps women get back on their feet by providing basic needs and resources, such as clothing for job interviews.”

Lucy: “There is definitely the external environment to consider. Even though statistics show limited females across STEM careers, I’ve found that Luxfer specifically is really future focussed and positive, and they will support you to build your career in the direction you want it to go.

“Generally, leadership in the gas industry is male dominated, but if we have more women advancing into the most senior roles, such as the CEOs of Hydrogen UK, UKHFCA and the BCGA, there will be a trickledown effect on individual companies.”

Grace: “In Canada, at our sister factory, my female colleague has been promoted recently, and there is a push for females into technical roles, which is good. For me, visibility is a huge thing. If you see people doing the job you think you want to do, it will help people consider it as a career path. 

“A lot has changed since I was at school, when there were generally more males than females in my physics classes. In my school Engineering wasn’t really talked about as a possible career path; I only considered it because my dad was an engineer."

"There is currently a shortage of engineers. Which means if you're interested in maths and science you might be encouraged to consider engineering, regardless of your gender, and that’s really important.”

Emily: “I studied maths at university and there were more females on my course than males. And it was the same at sixth form when I was studying A Levels - my entire maths class was female, there wasn't a single male.

“I feel incredibly lucky to have landed where I am because I came out of university without a career focus, until I found myself in this particular job, where I get to learn about all areas of the business. The opportunities are limitless.”

Embracing equity through culture and policy

Luxfer Gas Cylinders is committed to fostering an inclusive, honest, diverse team, and is passionate that Luxfer’s strength is in its employees. To achieve this the organisation has established a number of policies and training on this and our company values. 

Lucy: “You’re introduced to a variety of company policies as part of your induction and there are monthly training sessions all employees are required to complete that help individuals identify any circumstances of inequality or concern.

“Our company values include integrity, accountability and teamwork, and in my experience, I think these values are genuinely shown by most members of staff - and demonstrated by our leadership team too. If someone wasn’t upholding those values, I feel that there is open communication for you to express that and have a conversation around it. There is a real sense of shared accountability.

Mikayla: “Working at Luxfer is really fulfilling. From a personal perspective, I love what Luxfer stands for – the greater goals of making the world a better place to live, they really care about what they do.”

Grace: “Six months into joining Luxfer Gas Cylinders my scope of work expanded and that was great for my development, because I had the chance to contribute to a wide range of projects, from installing a new machine to potential site development. It was a massive learning curve but it’s what I love – my role is interesting and varied. With our focus on alternative fuel, it’s an exciting time to be in this industry. It’s rare in terms of engineering to work on something that is so pioneering.”


Virtual pipeline solutions support hydrogen expansion

Written by Kevin Gilbert, Design Engineer at Luxfer Gas Cylinders EuropeAs world leaders gathered at COP27 in a renewed push around hydrogen as an alternative fuel, one of the much-debated issues remained - infrastructure. It is acknowledged as critical to widespread adoption, particularly amid the commitment made by 2023 for 5% of the global deep-sea fleet to run on clean fuel, with six green shipping corridors operational by 2050.Where no gas networks exist, bulk gas transportation systems offer a route to take hydrogen from the point of production to the point of use as a ‘virtual pipeline’, and Luxfer is pioneering in this space, in a bid to make hydrogen more accessible. In fact, among Luxfer’s latest projects are 20-foot, 40-foot and 45-foot Multiple Element Gas Containers (MEGC), which can store between 0.5 and 1.4 tonnes of hydrogen, based upon the cylinder technology employed and the end-use destination. 

A model to move hydrogen to suit business need

Across the market, companies are interrogating ways to move hydrogen that would best suit their operation. Two options available are:- To own assets and move large amounts of hydrogen using a high capacity system, or- To invest in a supplier who can handle deliveries, transporting smaller quantities of the clean gas across countries, to where it’s needed.While early demand was for the larger units, due to barriers to access the gas in great quantities, Luxfer was increasingly called upon to help firms who needed to transport smaller volumes of gas.However, as carbon reduction targets become a central focus for companies, the distribution of smaller quantities could present issues. After all, a 40-foot container is a greener option than a number of trucks clogging up the road network. Ensuring a sustainable operation will need to be on the radar for OEMs – and Luxfer has the knowledge and track record to help in this decision-making.It’s not clear at this point what route will be taken. Are physical pipelines advantageous, or will virtual pipeline alternatives be better received? With input from companies with a stake in the hydrogen economy, this will be directed by the market and government. Consultations continue to take place, and at Luxfer we have added our voice to the discussion, as members of the UK HFCA and Hydrogen Europe. In fact, Luxfer’s bulk gas transport experts have submitted their insights to a recent UK Government paper on Hydrogen Transport and Storage Infrastructure, and we will continue to share our position on how hydrogen can pave the way to achieving Net Zero.

Over 30 years of gas storage expertise

While hydrogen is a new and burgeoning area, Luxfer’s industry-leading composite gas storage solutions have been established over 30 years. From lightweight cylinders for self-contained breathing apparatus worn by firefighters, to H2 storage systems for a range of transport projects. These include:- A collaboration with Netherlands and Belgium-based sustainable vehicle manufacturer E-Trucks Europe to deliver a fleet of zero-emission refuse truck.- The UK’s first mass-produced hydrogen-electric truck, in a landmark partnership with Tevva Hydrogen Electric Trucks.Luxfer’s MEGC solutions are recently developed, with the objective to help companies distribute hydrogen across the UK and Europe. The ambition is to create a mass of hydrogen through electrolysers. With local governments providing the funds necessary, Luxfer can support the hydrogen economy – ultimately delivering on our mission to safeguard a clean and energy-efficient environment for all.

Bulk gas transport – the road ahead

While early developments in harnessing hydrogen’s potential pivoted around on-road, there is a significant requirement for Net Zero to utilise clean fuel on our waterways. However, we’re still some way off seeing the first hydrogen cruise liner. At Luxfer, we have worked on several hydrogen marine applications, such as the world’s first hydrogen-powered Crew Transfer Vessel. Thanks to this track record, we can support companies that want to develop bulk gas transportation for waterways and help them navigate challenges, such as the lack of specific legislation.High-pressure gas containment demands the utmost standards of safety and quality, which Luxfer can deliver due to its unrivalled technical and engineering expertise.Looking ahead, other areas of focus for Luxfer include equipping the construction to use hydrogen. It involves use of the clean fuel to operate groundwork vehicles, boosting the sustainability of building projects. Luxfer has the know-how for this, drawing upon projects for hydrogen tractors, heavy-duty port vehicles and other off-road vehicles. Indeed, in some cases this work is designing solutions to fit with Luxfer systems customers already have in place.This helps to build confidence that Luxfer has the crucial insights and has evolved its expertise in gas storage and its know-how in cylinder technology, to the rapidly expanding alternative fuel landscape.

A high quality cylinder for hydrogen

At Luxfer Gas Cylinders we have applied our trusted, proprietary technology to the bulk gas transport market with our G-Stor™ Pro H2 Type 3 cylinder.Featuring a Luxfer-manufactured aluminium liner, fully wrapped with aerospace-grade carbon fibre, it is heavier than a Type 4 cylinder. And while this could seem less efficient than using a Type 4 cylinder with a polymer liner, the high thermal conductivity of our aluminium liner removes heat from the gas generated as it is filled. Heat produced in a fast-fill system could damage a Type 4 polymer-lined cylinder. It would be necessary to chill the gas or slow down the filling time to avoid this – and a speedy turnaround is preferable for most customers. With a Type 3 cylinder, none of the hydrogen is wasted, plus they are more robust, fill faster and won’t leak, which means a choosing a Type 3 increases the asset value of the entire system. Luxfer’s objective is to continue to innovate, offering customers solutions pinned upon what they need, and what’s most important to their operation. Key considerations for any bulk gas transport project will include the right filling speeds and maximum gas capacity. As a technology-neutral company, Luxfer is working hard to ensure it can support any virtual pipeline requirement. 


H2 Mobility

Written By - Lewis Anderson, Alternative Fuels Manager at Luxfer Gas Cylinders

At COP27, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told delegates that ‘we need to act faster on curbing climate change’ – despite the Ukraine conflict and nationwide economic uncertainty.

Former Prime Minister Boris Johnson echoed this sentiment, highlighting the need to ‘double down’ on net zero targets.

At Luxfer, we’re committed to supporting companies as they explore cleaner fuels adoption across their transport solutions. And, as hydrogen infrastructure continues to be a barrier, H2 storage and bulk gas transportation has remained at the forefront of our strategy.

Pioneering H2 storage systems across the world

Thanks to significant funding commitments from governments and organisations to make the use of alternative fuels more widespread, the hydrogen industry is accelerating faster than ever.

We entered the hydrogen sector more than two decades ago and since then the narrative on the clean gas has swung from ‘expensive white elephant’ to ‘silver bullet’. We’re now seeing real progress, with projects coming to fruition that would likely have been deemed impossible before. 

At Luxfer we passionately believe that hydrogen represents a viable and sustainable alternative fuel source. Worldwide, momentum exists. This is evidenced by our recent International Trade Award from the East Midlands Business Masters, and we’re proud to be acknowledged for our work pioneering hydrogen storage systems across the globe.

Our UK team was also recognised in 2022 with finalist positions in the World Hydrogen Awards and Energy Awards. In fact, alternative fuels now represent the fastest-growing division across the whole Luxfer Group. 

In order to achieve carbon reduction targets it is agreed that vehicles must be manufactured - or adapted – so they can be powered by alternative fuels. This includes passenger vehicle such as buses and trains, plus commercial and heavy goods like trucks, ships, refuse trucks and more. While there are differing rates at which markets have embraced and invested in cleaner, greener fuel, the potential for H2 storage systems has driven demand and allowed Luxfer to expand its footprint.

This international expansion includes forging links with Taiwan, with Luxfer selected to support them as they embark on their first pilot hydrogen bus. This collaboration was cited by the Department of International Trade recently, as an example of the UK’s leading clean fuel expertise, with a TV crew from Taiwan visiting our HQ to learn more about our hydrogen offering.

Years of experience in navigating the maritime sector

With 90% of freight transported via waterways, new solutions were necessary to achieve a reduction of 50% of CO2e by 2050, and this meant examining how vessels are built, powered and regulated.

From Luxfer’s debut marine project – the Energy Observer - in 2016, the significant engineering challenge of H2 storage for maritime has been a focus. 

Safety is key, particularly amid an unstable regulatory landscape and alongside issues such as the harsh, corrosive environment that requires durable and high-quality cylinder systems.

For over 15 years Luxfer has been supplying its high-performance G-Stor™ H2 alternative fuel cylinders to international shipping and logistics giant CMB (Compagnie Maritime Belge). As a result of this collaboration, hundreds of our cylinders are part of prototypes and early proof of concept hydrogen systems for both marine vessels and on-road vehicles. This includes the world’s first hydrogen-powered Crew Transfer Vessel (CTV), which was introduced by Windcat Workboats and CMB.TECH (the cleantech division of CMB).

The Hydrocat 48 reduces the emissions of wind farm operators and was launched in May 2022.  It features a 27-cylinder dual fuel system and can carry 207kg of hydrogen. It is estimated that the CTV can reduce up to 80% of its traditional fuel usage and associated emissions through using dual fuel technology, as a pathway leading to 100% hydrogen technology. 

Organisations such as CMB.TECH, who are making huge progress to wean the industry from fossil fuels, are providing an impetus that will change the marketplace. 

A joined-up approach to drive forward hydrogen

The introduction of two world-class Teesside hydrogen hubs, alongside the government’s aim to increase production up to 10GW by 2030 and create 12,000 jobs in the industry, are important milestones in the UK. 

While infrastructure and proving cost efficiency have affected hydrogen take-up, Luxfer is proud to have partnered with a number of forward-thinking companies, designing innovative projects. What we believe is needed is a joined-up approach to help circumvent some of the barriers.

Luxfer is well qualified to help shape policy, thanks to over 80 years of experience in gas storage. We are now part of a new think tank, the Hydrogen Transport and Storage Working Group, which was established by the UK Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association (UK HFCA), of which we’re a member. Its aim is to assess how hydrogen transport and storage in the UK should develop. 

What’s fantastic is that we’re now at a critical point, with Luxfer engineers among a groundswell of organisations that are pushing the boundaries. 

We believe, so far, that the world has only scratched the surface of hydrogen’s potential, and we’re proud to be a pioneer in this exciting space. 


Luxfer Hydrogen R134

Hydrogen cylinders from world-leading gas storage specialists Luxfer Gas Cylinders are now approved to the new global regulation, amplifying the organisation’s values of high quality and safety first.

Following a rigorous testing regime, a range of Luxfer’s Type 3 hydrogen cylinders and systems has achieved Regulation No 134 (R134), which is an international certification for hydrogen cylinder manufacturers. 

Luxfer’s hydrogen fuel storage systems provide development opportunities for alternative fuel vehicles. Achieving this safety regulation highlights that Luxfer’s high performance cylinders and systems are safe for use in hydrogen-powered vehicles, across a wide range of applications.

Alex Millward, Alternative Fuel Technical Manager at Luxfer, explains: “Within our business, safety is paramount and as hydrogen is such a dynamic sector, being responsive to change and offering high performing, durable hydrogen fuel storage solutions is vital to the industry.

“From 2009 until 2022, hydrogen vehicles operating in Europe have required approval in accordance with Regulation EC79. More recently, EC79 has been replaced by R134. Whilst this regulation was originally for passenger and light duty modes of transport, it has now been revised and is applicable to more heavy duty vehicles.

Component manufacturers achieving approval in accordance with R134 is vital in decarbonising the transport sector and is important in nurturing confidence in hydrogen systems among companies who may be looking to invest in greener, more sustainable solutions as part of their carbon reduction strategies.

Alex continues: “Our commitment to the hydrogen transport sector is a demonstration of the innovation embedded within our engineering teams, and our customer-first approach. We consistently seek to maintain the strictest safety regulations for our products, and we’re proud to be able to offer high-performance hydrogen solutions to pioneering organisations driving the adoption of this renewable fuel.

“For the sector at large it’s good news too - harmonising the regulatory landscape is an important factor for growth in the hydrogen economy.”

Bill Mezher, Luxfer Gas Cylinders’ Composite Technology and Innovation Manager, adds: “Building on over 20 years of experience providing compressed hydrogen storage solutions, we are happy to expand our product portfolio and offer cylinders approved to the UN ECE R134 regulation. 

“Our cylinders are designed and qualified in multiple jurisdictions, giving our customers flexibility of design and the opportunity to expand their solution offerings across the world.”

Luxfer Gas Cylinders’ most recent hydrogen projects include a fleet of zero-emission refuse trucks with Netherlands and Belgium-based sustainable vehicle manufacturer E-Trucks Europe, and the UK’s first mass produced hydrogen-electric truck, in a historic milestone with partner Tevva Hydrogen Electric Trucks.


ULEMCo and Luxfer collaboration enables dual fuel conversion

Vehicles that embed hydrogen technology into dual fuel systems are helping create a greener transport network, as part of a long term collaboration that has already saved significant harmful emissions.Hydrogen storage experts Luxfer Gas Cylinders has supplied leading hydrogen fuel specialist ULEMCo since 2014, with the two pioneering firms collaborating to make vehicles hydrogen ready and harness the clean gas to deliver GHG emission savings.Projects have included hydrogen-powered trucks, LGVs, refuse trucks, road sweepers and even a prototype ambulance – many already in operation within the UK.

First of it's kind dual fuel refuse truck

In one recent initiative, a waste collection truck has been launched that combines hydrogen with non-fossil fuel HVO (hydrotreated vegetable oil), opening up the opportunity for negative carbon vehicles. It is the first dual fuel refuse truck of its kind in the UK, and will make use of Aberdeen’s hydrogen refuelling hub.The overarching objective within the supply chain for ULEMCo is to offer options that will allow the transport industry to cost effectively decarbonise their operations, by using the existing engines in their vehicles, adapted for hydrogen fuel. Luxfer’s unique liner-processing technology means its hydrogen cylinders are among the highest-capacity, fastest to refill and lightest Type 3 alternative fuel cylinders in the world. These G-Stor® H2 cylinders are provided, to be slotted into retrofitted designs of converted diesel engines.Amanda Lyne, ULEMCo Managing Director, explains: “We’ve worked with Luxfer since we founded the company in 2014 and we chose Luxfer cylinders because of the quality and service they offer. By using combustion technology that is widely understood, the transport industry can start saving GHG emissions, far quicker than waiting for the commercial viability of zero-emission options that are not widely available today.“While a key issue is to maximise the volume of hydrogen that can be fitted into a broad spectrum of vehicles, Luxfer’s range of cylinder sizes give that crucial flexibility.”

Diesel conversion showing promise

With diesel conversions offering an accessible way for operators to kickstart their hydrogen journey, the projects Luxfer and ULEMCo have worked on together are showing huge promise. For example, ULEMCo recently showed that one of the nine-strong fleet of hydrogen dual fuel road sweepers in Aberdeen can displace 50% of the diesel with hydrogen, including the auxiliary engine that powers the vacuum - an excellent demonstration of the potential for the technology. If this was applied to similarly-converted road sweepers across all UK Councils, it is estimated by ULEMCo that 10,000 tonnes of CO2 per year could be saved.Jim Gregory, European Business Development Manager at Luxfer Gas Cylinders, adds: “The relationship with ULEMCo is enduring because we have a shared vision to demonstrate the possibilities of hydrogen as an alternative fuel crucial to reaching net zero goals. “The real issue for the transport industry is to shift from diesel cost effectively, and this is where dual fuel conversions come into their own. Of course, there remains the barrier of infrastructure and access to the green gas, which ULEMCo is helping its customers circumvent too – making hydrogen a sound proposition.”Luxfer has an 80-year legacy in gas containment and has a specialist - and expanding - alternative fuel facility at its Colwick, Nottingham base. It is responsible for supplying hydrogen storage systems to international customers across the transport sector. 


Visit Luxfer at the Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Seminar

Visit Luxfer at the Hydrogen & Fuel Cell Seminar!

We are Luxfer Gas Cylinders, the leading provider of alternative fuel cylinders worldwide.

We offer a full range of lightweight, high-pressure cylinders for hydrogen applications.

Come see us in Long Beach at Booth #212 on February 7th - February 9th, 2023.


Visit Luxfer this year at FDIC

Visit Luxfer this year at FDIC!

We are Luxfer Gas Cylinders, the leading provider of SCBA cylinders worldwide.

We offer a full range of lightweight, small, durable, high-pressure cylinders for firefighters.

Come see us in Indianapolis at FDIC Booth #2305 April 24th-29th, 2023.


Visit Luxfer at the 2023 ACT Expo

Visit Luxfer at the 2023 ACT Expo!We are Luxfer Gas Cylinders, the leading provider of alternative fuel cylinders worldwide.We offer a full range of lightweight, high-pressure cylinders for hydrogen and compressed natural gas applications.Come see us in Anaheim at Booth #6973 on May 2nd - May 4th, 2023.