UK-based ITM Power is celebrating the opening of the UK's first publicly-accessible hydrogen refueling station. The station is located near the M1 highway in South Yorkshire, about 200 miles north of London. Honda, Hyundai, and Toyota are all lending their support for the new station. The automakers will be using the facility to show off the Honda FCX Clarity, Hyundai Ix35 and Toyota Mirai. Toyota is about to start official sales of that model both in the US and UK. What gets us is that a British Microcab will be featured, and all cars will be made available for ride-and-drive demonstrations.

The station is chock full of things like wind turbines and electrolysers and can hold 220 kilograms of hydrogen storage while using a 30-kilowatt fuel-cell system. The station opens with 350 bar of hydrogen but will be upgraded early next year to double that, and will be able to provide cars with as many as 400 miles worth of hydrogen in one fill-up.

ITM Power made news in these parts late last year when its CEO, Graham Cooley, detailed at the 2014 Michelin Challenge Bibendum in Chengdu, China, how the company uses its electrolyzer system to get what's essentially free hydrogen fuel. There's a lot of science involved, but it involves the northern UK's substantial wind supply, converting it into storable energy and, as a result, renewable power. You can read the details here and see below for ITM Power's press release on the new station.
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ITM Power (AIM: ITM), the energy storage and clean fuel company, is pleased to announce the launch of its first public access hydrogen refuelling station today at the Advanced Manufacturing Park, just off the M1, Junction 33 in South Yorkshire, funded by InnovateUK.

The launch is being supported by Hyundai, Toyota, and Honda who will all be displaying their fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV). Delegates will also be encouraged to 'ride and drive' the cars. The event will showcase the Hyundai Ix35, the Toyota Mirai, the Honda FCX Clarity and a British Microcab. Hyundai and Toyota will be presenting at the launch event and participating in a Q&A session.

The site, which as a public access refuelling station is the first of its kind in the UK, consists of a 225kW wind turbine coupled directly to an electrolyser, 220kg of hydrogen storage, a hydrogen dispensing unit and a 30kW fuel cell system capable of providing backup power generation for nearby buildings. The facility has been upgraded as a showcase for ITM Power's world-class hydrogen generation equipment and is used to provide retail hydrogen fuel services. The M1 motorway was highlighted as a key route for the early deployment of hydrogen refuelling in the UK in the published UK H2Mobility Phase 1 Report.

The station, which has been supported by Innovate UK, currently offers hydrogen gas at 350bar which was a specification of the Island Hydrogen (formally known as Eco Island) project. The station will be upgraded early 2016 to provide hydrogen at 700bar as a result of funding from the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV), this will provide the fuel cell vehicles with a longer range of between 350 – 400 miles and extend the reach of clean emission transportation in South Yorkshire to hydrogen refuelling stations elsewhere in the UK, including London.

Jon Hunt, Manager, Toyota & Lexus Fleet Marketing, Toyota (GB) PLC said "Toyota are delighted to congratulate and join ITM Power at the opening of the new M1 refuelling station. A project that will support the October launch into the UK of our new Mirai, the world's first dedicated mass produced hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle"

Tony Whitehorn, Hyundai Motor UK CEO, commented, "It is very encouraging indeed that the UK's hydrogen filling station infrastructure is developing. We welcome this ultra-green new site in the north of England, which will serve a very large area and is clearly one of the most advanced sites ever constructed. Hydrogen-powered cars are the future and Hyundai is a leader in the field. This new self-sufficient filling station is exactly what's needed."

Dr Graham Cooley, CEO, ITM Power, commented: "We are extremely pleased to be launching the first of the company's hydrogen refuelling stations today, at this very accessible location off the M1 in South Yorkshire, and to provide clean fuel for the fuel cell electric vehicles that are now available from the auto OEMs. Following the strategic forecourt siting agreement last week with Shell, this station will provide important reference for demystifying the ability to utilise renewable energy supply for its efficient conversion to clean fuel for clean transport emissionits, that is enabled by ITM's rapid response PEM electrolyser platform and the super impreimpressive performance of fuel cell electric cars."

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