Johnson Matthey to build 3-GW factory for H2 fuel cell components
Image by Wacker Chemie AG.
Johnson Matthey Plc (LON:JMAT), or JM, said today it is building a GBP-80-million (USD 94.7m/EUR 94.1m) gigafactory in the UK for the production of hydrogen fuel cell components.
The new facility at JM’s existing site in Royston is designed to have an annual production capacity of 3 GW for proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell components, to be used in hydrogen-powered vehicles. In the future, the gigafactory could almost triple its potential capacity by using the decommissioned Clean Air production facility, to produce both fuel cell and green hydrogen components, JM noted.
The construction of the plant’s initial 3-GW phase is expected to be completed in the first half of 2024. It aligns with JM’s recently announced strategy to establish itself as a market leader in performance components for fuel cells and electrolysers. The company’s goal is to achieve over GBP 200 million in sales in this field by the end of 2024/25.
The gigafactory project has the backing of the UK government through the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC)-managed Automotive Transformation Fund (ATF).
"We already have 15% of the fuel cell value chain radiating from UK businesses but this could be as much as 65% just by expanding on current strengths in electrochemistry and coatings or using our automotive capability to volume manufacture components," said Ian Constance, CEO of the APC.
The organisation estimates that the UK will require 14 GW of fuel cell stack production and 400,000 high-pressure carbon fibre tanks per year to meet local vehicle production demands by 2035.