Journal Archive

Platinum Metals Rev., 2001, 45, (4), 175

New Autocatalyst Plant Opens in Shanghai

Johnson Matthey Plant to Help in Effort to Improve Air Quality

  • John Chen

With the GDP in China growing at more than 7 per cent per annum in recent years, and a corresponding growth in motor vehicles and industrial output, the quality of air, especially in urban areas, has become a serious problem. To deal with this, the government of China published legislation requiring all newly manufactured passenger cars and light duty trucks and buses nationwide to meet EU Stage I legislation from the beginning of year 2000. China is also the largest single market for motorcycles and these vehicles will also have to comply with EU Stage I legislation from 2002. Tax incentives for new passenger cars to comply with EU Stage II will be published in 2001. In 2004, EU Stage II standards will become mandatory for passenger cars. China currently produces around 2 million passenger vehicles and light trucks and around 11 million motorcycles per year.

An employee at the Johnson Matthey Shanghai autocatalyst plant takes a core sample from a production catalyst for quality control tests

Automobile manufacturers in China are actively responding to the new legislation, and some of them, such as Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen, are going beyond the scope of the legislation by introducing into China vehicles which meet EU Stages III and IV emission levels. In addition, cities, such as Beijing and Shanghai, are seeking to meet these stricter standards ahead of national legislation, in order to tackle the major pollution in advance of the 2008 Olympic Games.

In June, to support this growing market, Johnson Matthey opened a new autocatalyst plant, located in Song Jiang Industrial Park, Shanghai. The plant employs the latest manufacturing technology and has the capacity to produce 500,000 catalysts suitable for passenger cars and 600,000 motorcycle catalysts annually. This is the latest of Johnson Matthey’s nine currently operating plants around the world and has recently started volume production for automotive customers in China.

John Chen is the Commercial and Technical Service Director, Johnson Matthey (Shanghai) Chemicals Limited. He is Interested in the application of pgm catalysts for vehicle emissions control.

The new Johnson Matthey autocatalyst plant in Shanghai. Using the latest manufacturing technology, the plant has the capacity for an annual production of 500,000 catalysts for passenger cars and 600,000 catalysts for motorcycles

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