News from Japan – 1) New Public Hydrogen Station and 2) Using Fuel Cells Vehicles to Deliver Power During Disasters

Apr 25, 2013 Japan has just opened its first public hydrogen station in a non-industrial area, adjacent to a conventional gas station in Ebina, Kanagawa prefecture. The Japanese government had previously required all hydrogen fueling stations to be located in industrial areas. Last year that regulation was changed, allowing hydrogen stations to be placed in residential areas and near gas stations. The goal is to increase the number of fuel cell vehicles on Japanese roadways. The new public hydrogen station was developed through a partnership of JX Nippon Oil & Energy Corp. and the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). JX Nippon Oil & Energy would like to develop 40 or more hydrogen stations by 2015. Both Honda and Toyota have fuel cell vehicles operating on Japanese roadways. Toyota has also deployed several fuel cell buses. Also in recent news, Honda is testing the use of a fuel cell vehicle  to deliver power to single-family homes during a disaster. The Honda fuel cell car could deliver a maximum of 9 kW of power, which is sufficient to power an average home for six days. During a two-year experiment, the car will send electricity to a Japanese home once a week, between 10 AM and 4 PM, to examine how much power the car can provide to the home. Last August, Toyota announced that it had equipped a fuel cell bus with a power supply system to deliver a maximum of 3 kW of power, which could power home appliances continuously for more than 100 hours. Toyota is also developing a vehicle-to-home (V2H) system that would deliver from a fuel cell bus to a building to provide a maximum output of 9.8 kW for 50 hours, enough to power lights in a school gymnasium for about five days. The V2H system will be tested in Japan during 2013-2014.

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