COPERNIC, COst and PERformaNce Improvement for Cgh2 composite tanks

A certain level of maturity of on-board compressed gaseous storage systems have been demonstrated through large Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV) deployment projects like Clean Energy Partnership (100+ FCEVs). In addition, major car companies have confirmed their intent to start production by 2015. Nevertheless, major issues still remain to be addressed:


  • VOLUME: Actual CGH2 tank production is far from being capable of feeding the volume requested by the automotive industry. Therefore, current manufacturing equipment and production strategies are not designed for addressing such a market.
  • COSTS: Latest techno-economic analysis (DoE 05/2011) are still forecasting that industrial costs for 700bar CGH2 tanks may remain 4 to 5 times higher than expected targets. This is particularly critical with respect to a massive deployment of FCEV. COPERNIC will address the two major targets: performance improvements and cost reduction of 70MPa TypeIV composite vessels for automotive application in order to achieve targets and lead to rapid industrial exploitation owing to the strong contribution of 4 SME and industrial partners in the consortium. It will provide real scale demonstration on a pilot manufacturing line quantitative and technical and economic assessment of strategies including evolution of materials, components, processes and designs.


Therefore, in full consistency with the call Topic, the COPERNIC project will contribute to:

  • Increase the maturity and competitiveness of CGH2 manufacturing processes evolving from classical automotive manufacturing technologies or concepts.
  • Decrease costs while improving composite quality, manufacturing productivity and using optimized composite design, materials and components.



The expected outcome of the proposed project is to improve tanks and related components, lower cost production processes and improve test methods.

 In addition, the final deliverable of the WP Evaluation will be disseminated over the scientific and industrial community to prepare for the integration of optimized CGH2 storage systems. It could eventually be exploited for demonstration of H2-fuelled road vehicles (e.g. Topics SP1-JTI-FCH.1.1 & SP1-JTI-FCH.1.2).

The scope of work of COPERNIC is extremely relevant today to ensure that the deployment of FCEV is not inhibited by prohibitive high-pressure tanks cost or availability. Current materials, conception & design as well as manufacturing processes are highly conservative and this project will allow us to explore the full optimization potential of composite cylinders.


Project Title: COst and PERformaNce Improvement for Cgh2 composite tanks

Project ID:325330

Programme: FP7

Call: FCH-JU-2012-1

Rdg: FCH

Start date: 1st june 2013

Duration: 36 months

Total cost: 3,4M€

Requested funding: 2M€

Project manager:  Fabien NONY