hydrogen for the future with HIMA and NUS.

As Singapore explores different biofuels in the midst of moving towards low-carbon energy sources, hydrogen has been earmarked to potentially power domestic transport demands in the transition towards net zero by 2050.


Transport demands have always been a huge generator of carbon emissions. Your daily convenient commute to work and back often translates to irreversible carbon pollution, damaging our atmosphere. However, what if that could change in the future?

That is where hydrogen comes in.

hydrogen can be a sustainable biofuel.

As Singapore explores different biofuels in the midst of moving towards low-carbon energy sources, hydrogen has been earmarked to potentially power domestic transport demands in the transition towards net zero by 2050.

On the maritime and aviation front, low-carbon hydrogen can contribute to the global transition towards greener shipping and aviation, acting as a sustainable and attractive alternative to fossil fuels.

However, this isn’t as easy as just stockpiling hydrogen. In the adoption of hydrogen, being able to import, store, handle and utilise hydrogen safely and at scale is of top priority.

Hydrogen is foreseen as extremely flammable and explosive, representing a hazard at all stages of the value chain. Therefore, organisations involved at every stage of the chain will require extensive consideration of safety lifecycle management.

There have also been continuing accidents relating to Hydrogen, with incidents in South Korea and Norway in 2019 providing motivation for the rigorous application of good safety management systems into all activities of the hydrogen value chain and lifecycle, which in turn, points to requirements of good practices and standards.

so how can we make hydrogen safer?

HIMA, in collaboration with the National University of Singapore (NUS), has recently commissioned a new study on the potential of safe low-carbon hydrogen technology pathways for decarbonisation and the risk mitigation of potential hazards.

Two NUS post-graduate students completing their Master of Science in Safety Health & Environmental Technology Programme, Liu Siyuan and An Yilin, recently presented their white papers on the aforementioned topic on 11 May.

This presentation falls under a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed last August, where NUS’s department of chemical and biomolecular engineering will collaborate with HIMA.

“We are thrilled to provide a hands-on platform where the students can gain the knowledge and experience which translates to real-world solutions. Hydrogen-related accidents provide motivation to properly study its use and how to safely harness its potential through all parts of the value chain,” said Mr Sujith Panikkar, Senior Consultant from HIMA.

“This white paper took Siyuan and Yilin months to complete through hard work and lots of research. We are confident that their findings will offer a fresh, youthful lens on the safety aspects of hydrogen usage as a sustainable energy alternative in Singapore and beyond.”

This study will inadvertently pave the way for future hydrogen innovations, and help provide companies with a greater understanding of how this alternative form of energy can be harnessed in a safe and effective manner.


Toyota has also started to use hydrogen in its plants. Read more about it here.

Sean Loo

Ignition Labs' resident editor loves all things retro, even though he was born in the late 90s. His main job encompasses tons of driving (and a massive carbon footprint), but he swears he turns off the lights each time he leaves his room.

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