Sheffield & South Yorkshire

First 'zero-emissions' hydrogen filling station opens

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Media captionFuelling a hydrogen car

A zero-emissions refuelling station for hydrogen-powered cars - claimed to be the first of its kind in the country - has opened.

ITM Power created the site at the Advanced Manufacturing Park near the M1 in Rotherham.

It uses electricity generated by a wind turbine to split water into its constituent parts: hydrogen and oxygen.

A hydrogen car could now fill up with enough fuel for it to reach London from South Yorkshire, the company said.

Rebecca Markillie, of Sheffield based ITM, said: "It's the perfect solution. It's a clean fuel utilising wind power, we start with water and end with water".

A hydrogen-powered car only emits water vapour as it runs.

The oxygen produced at the site is released into the atmosphere and the hydrogen is stored before being used to refuel fuel cell vehicles.

As fossil fuels are not used in the production process, the station is the first carbon-neutral with zero emissions, the company said.

Refuelling fuel cell vehicles takes a few minutes and a full tank gives a range of 250-300 miles.

Ms Markillie said the site was a small start but the company "can scale up the technology".

The company also is planning to open two more refuelling stations in London.

Currently there are only around 20 hydrogen-powered cars on the UK roads but new models are being launched by major manufacturers.

The Rotherham station generates enough hydrogen to refuel around 18 cars a day, the company said.

ITM Power employs about 70 people in South Yorkshire.

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