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Low Carbon Scenario Analysis of a Hydrogen-Based Energy Transition for On-Road Transportation in California

Vishnu Vijayakumar (), Alan Jenn () and Lewis Fulton ()
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Vishnu Vijayakumar: Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA
Alan Jenn: Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA
Lewis Fulton: Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA

Energies, 2021, vol. 14, issue 21, 1-27

Abstract: Fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) are emerging as one of the prominent zero emission vehicle technologies. This study follows a deterministic modeling approach to project two scenarios of FCEV adoption and the resulting hydrogen demand (low and high) up to 2050 in California, using a transportation transition model. The study then estimates the number of hydrogen production and refueling facilities required to meet demand. The impact of system scale-up and learning rates on hydrogen price is evaluated using standalone supply chain models: H2A, HDSAM, HRSAM and HDRSAM. A sensitivity analysis explores key factors that affect hydrogen prices. In the high scenario, light and heavy-duty fuel cell vehicle stocks reach 12.5 million and 1 million by 2050, respectively. The resulting annual hydrogen demand is 3.9 billion kg, making hydrogen the dominant transportation fuel. Satisfying such high future demands will require rapid increases in infrastructure investments starting now, but especially after 2030 when there is an exponential increase in the number of production plants and refueling stations. In the long term, electrolytic hydrogen delivered using dedicated hydrogen pipelines to larger stations offers substantial cost savings. Feedstock prices, size of the hydrogen market and station utilization are the prominent parameters that affect hydrogen price.

Keywords: fuel cell vehicle; hydrogen demand modeling; hydrogen supply chain (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q4 Q40 Q41 Q42 Q43 Q47 Q48 Q49 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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