Showa Shell Sekiyu KK (Showa Shell) has announced that it is to build the first hydrogen refuelling station in Tokyo, in partnership with Iwatani International Corporation and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. Showa Shell is a Japanese company equally owned by Japanese interests and the Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies (Shell).

Shell Hydrogen will be providing technological know-how for the refuelling station, which is due for completion next year. Shell is involved in demonstration projects in the world’s three key hydrogen markets: the US, Europe and Japan.

Showa Shell’s refuelling station is part of the Japan Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Demonstration Project, a programme sponsored by the country’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry to build five hydrogen refuelling stations in the Tokyo metropolitan area. The station will provide liquid and compressed hydrogen to a fleet of prototype fuel cell vehicles, provided by several automotive companies, which will be used on the city’s streets. Showa Shell will operate the station for two years from April 2003.

The 1,800-square-metre site of the new liquid hydrogen refuelling station is owned by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. It is located in central Tokyo, close to Showa Shell’s headquarters in Odaiba.

Showa Shell and Shell Hydrogen will demonstrate safe and efficient hydrogen refuelling systems through this project, contributing to Shell’s worldwide effort to develop global standards for hydrogen fuel stations.

Shell’s other hydrogen demonstration projects are in California, Iceland and the Netherlands.