Put hydrogen in your tank – and a smile on your face

Clean driving and a clean conscience.


H2 MOBILITY’s roadmap provides for the establishment of the first 100 hydrogen stations by 2018/2019 irrespective of the number of fuel cell vehicles on the road. The goal is to set up ten stations in each of six German metropolitan areas (Hamburg, Berlin, Rhine-Ruhr, Frankfurt, Stuttgart and Munich) as well as ensuring hydrogen corridors along motorways.

The second phase of the project will be aligned with the numbers of fuel cell vehicles registered. A total of 400 hydrogen refuelling stations are to ensure nationwide coverage across Germany by 2023, and pave the way for an electric mobility future.

How does hydrogen get into the tank

Drivers of hydrogen vehicles don’t really have to adapt at all, when it comes to refuelling – just like driving. They simply drive to a service station with a hydrogen pump, and fill up with gaseous hydrogen at a pressure of up 700 bar. The pump is connected to the fuel tank opening of the electric vehicle with a locking coupling. Only three or four minutes are needed to refuel a vehicle.

The infrared interface is one difference between hydrogen vehicles and conventional ones. Vehicle data relevant for refuelling is transmitted during the refuelling process.

Hydrogen can be delivered to the refuelling station in a number of ways – through pipelines, by tanker, or it can be generated on site. The best possible option is selected, taking into account the location, the availability and economic factors, but always with a view to maximising the percentage of renewable energy used.

Hydrogen – a fuel and an energy store

Electric vehicles are powered by a fuel cell. Hydrogen reacts with oxygen to convert energy stored in the hydrogen into electrical energy, which is then used to drive the engine. The reaction produces zero emissions. The fuel cell, which was originally invented back in 1839, is not only clean. It is also quiet. Fuel cells are smaller than combustion engines and are much more efficient. Fuel cell vehicles have a far greater range than battery-powered vehicles. And fuel cells can be used in larger and heavier vehicles like buses. Hydrogen is also being tested in rail traffic and in shipping, as well as in forklifts and other goods transporters.