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Mazda opens first hydrogen filling station in western Japan

HIROSHIMA, Japan, - Mazda Motor Corporation recently put a hydrogen filling station into service that will store and supply fuel for the company's ongoing hydrogen vehicle research and development. The new hydrogen station began operating in early February and is located near Mazda's global headquarters in Hiroshima. This unique filling station is the first in the Chugoku region of western Japan, and is another tangible step forward in Mazda's support for the development of a hydrogen-fueled society.

The facility supplies fuel to both the hydrogen engine test facility and Mazda's hydrogen rotary-engined vehicles currently on the road for under development and testing purposes. High-pressure hydrogen gas is stored at about 2,900 psi in compressed hydrogen gas tanks and then further pressurized to over 5,000 psi for delivery to the vehicles. The inventory stored at Mazda's hydrogen fueling station enables up to 10 vehicles per day to be fueled with hydrogen gas.

Permission from Japan's Ministry of Land Infrastructure and Transport (MLIT) came in October 2004 for the first public road tests of Mazda's RX-8 Hydrogen Rotary (known as H2RE) - a rotary-engined, dual-fuel vehicle that runs on either hydrogen or traditional gasoline. The hydrogen gas station allows Mazda to continue development of hydrogen rotary engines with the goal of selling hydrogen vehicles to public entities and corporations in Japan within two years.

Mazda North America Operations is responsible for the sales and marketing, customer parts and services support of Mazda vehicles in the United States. Headquartered in Irvine, Calif., MNAO has more than 700 dealerships nationwide. The company's design and research & development facilities are located at a separate facility in Irvine, employing nearly 100 people dedicated to the design and development of vehicles specifically for the North American market.

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