• William Forshaw

  • Theme:Low Carbon Fuels
  • Project:Modular hydrogen storage for low-carbon road transport
  • Supervisor: Tim Mays
  • The Gorgon's Head - Bath University Logo
Photo of Will Forshaw


Will graduated from the University of Reading in 2022 in BSc Construction Management and Building Surveying participating in research and consultancy projects alongside such as bringing new technology into hydroponics and how to improve teaching at the university. His dissertation focused on the progress of decarbonising heat with heat pumps and culminated in a feature with the Centre for Climate Justice; the data featured showed some of the technical and socioeconomic factors which prevent households from installing systems as well as the impact of government grants and schemes across the country.

Will is planning to develop his technical knowledge and academic skills during his MRes year while learning more about transport infrastructure and the automotive industry. Continuing the theme of decarbonisation of energy, Will is focusing on developing new modular Hydrogen storage systems for vehicles and assessing the feasibility as well as impact of such options in comparison to other fuelling methods as a PhD project. After finishing at Bath he hopes to either continue conducting research or use the expertise gained during the programme and his wide range of skills to provide useful input into industry as a consultant.


  • I have sailed to many of the Channel Islands and hope to visit them all!
  • I love designing and making, some of my projects have even won competitions.
  • I am a photographer and urban explorer for fun.
  • I have played video games at competitive tournaments from time to time.
Modular hydrogen storage for low-carbon road transport

Green molecular or di-hydrogen (H2) is an exciting and interesting option as a low-carbon fuel for road transport, including light- and heavy-duty vehicles, with the added benefit of lower negative air quality impacts compared with fossil fuels whether used in ICEs or fuel cells. 

However, a major challenge with on-board storage is refuelling of fixed tanks which requires a distributed, publicly accessible infrastructure incorporating the safe management of high-pressures (up to 70 MPa for compressed gas) or low temperatures (below 30 K for liquid H2).  An alternative option is a modular approach where empty tanks are replaced with tanks that have been filled separately by well-controlled and ultra-safe agents. 

This transfers refuelling risks (and skills) to these agents from the public and does not necessarily require extensive infrastructure.  Refuelling (or “retanking”) may also be quicker than currently envisaged at a H2 station. However, there are issues that need to be understood to determine whether this modular approach is technically feasible, economically viable, would be acceptable to the public and would lead to lower carbon emissions over the vehicle life cycle compared with all the major options including batteries. 

Will would identify and assess these issues lading to the conceptual design of a prototype modular refuelling system (or systems) for the road vehicle fleet.  An important outcome will be CAD and possibly also physical desk-top models to demonstrate the principles and operation of these systems. 

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