European Commission
agence de communication Lyon


The Health and Safety Laboratory (HSL) is the UK’s leading health and safety research facility employing over 350 scientific, medical and technical specialists. We have a long track record of effective operation throughout the UK and beyond. Our capabilities encompass a wide range of topics including: human factors and risk assessment; fire, explosion and process safety; occupational and environmental health; safety engineering; work environment and specialist photographic and technical services. This breadth of expertise underpins our particular strength in creating multidisciplinary teams to solve health and safety problems.

The Major Hazards Unit at HSL has vast experience on the hazards of hydrogen, pressurised storage and composites. It is a key partner in the International Association of Hydrogen Safety (was a founding of HySafe NOE).

HSL will bring its unique industrial and technical insight to the project, and its expectations are that it will make a significant contribution to improve safety, and advancing technology in this important area.

In addition to the above, HSL is involved in EU collaborative projects HyIndoor and H2FC concerned with hydrogen safety and storage. Over the last ten years it has done work on hydrogen safety for commercial customers (including hazard assessment, dispenser testing etc), other UK Government Departments, and as part of a number of EU collaborative projects, including Hyper project and HyApproval.


Kate Hollifeld
Health and Safety Laboratory
Harpur Hill
SK17 9JN
United Kingdom
Tel : +441298218831

Key people involved

Dr. Stuart Hawksworth is Unit head of the Major Hazards Unit at HSL. His scientific background is as a PhD physicist who has worked in the area of gas, spray and dust explosions since 1993. He was the main author of the successful HYPER proposal, and was involved in many aspects of the project. He was the coordinator of MECHEX (EU FP5) project and a participant in the S2S (EU FP5) project. In addition he is also leading a number of nationally funded projects including: Effect of contamination on igniting ability of electrostatic discharges; He is a member of standards committees: BSI FSH/23; BSI GEL/601, BSI GEL/101 and IEA Task 31.

Richard Bettis is an engineer with a background in experimental safety research, particularly in the areas of fires and hazardous fluids. He has team leader for a number of programmes studying the behaviour of pressure-liquefied materials such as propane, chlorine and HF, the behaviour of toxic clouds from pools of oleum and the behaviour of fires in unusual environments such as transport tunnels and compressed air workings. He has spent 20 years working at the Buxton laboratories of HSL, specialising in experimental design and instrumentation.

Jill Wilday is a chemical engineer with experience of risk assessment, process safety, two phase flow, pressure relief systems and chemical industry operations. She leads the HSL involvement in assessing predictive and technical aspects of COMAH Safety Reports anon behalf of HSE and also has experience of assessing the fire, explosion and QRA aspects of offshore safety cases. Previously she had 12 years industrial experience within ICI and was responsible for the introduction of the MSc course in Process Safety and Loss Prevention at Sheffield University.

Kate Hollifield is a scientist in the Explosives Atmospheres team of the Major Hazards Unit of HSL. Her experience at HSL has been with hydrogen management for the nuclear decommissioning industry. Kate has a MChem (Hons) degree from The University of Edinburgh where she worked in a medical research laboratory investigating the self-assembly of tetrahedral supra-molecular assemblies. Other scientific topics of interest have been environmental and materials chemistry.