The history of Johnson Matthey's Emission Control Technologies (ECT) business.
In the 1950s automotive exhaust emissions were identified as a major cause of smog in Los Angeles. In 1955 the US Congress passes the Air Pollution Act.
British government passes Clean Air Act
International Clean Air Congress held in London
US Congress passes Clean Air Act
The US Motor Vehicle Air Pollution Control Act (amends the Clean Air Act) set the first federal emissions standards to control pollution from cars.
Johnson Matthey R&D to develop autocatalysts for 1970 US Clean Air Act
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is formed. Congress passes a major revision of the Clean Air Act.
General Motors promises ‘pollution free’ cars by 1980 and urges the elimination of lead additives from gasoline in order to allow the use of catalytic converters.
Johnson Matthey files a patent covering the use of rhodium promoted platinum catalysts to control NOx and gaseous organic compounds.
Environmental Protection Agency announces all gasoline stations require to carry ‘unleaded’ gasoline
Corning develops cordierite ceramics with high temperature and thermal shock resistance for catalyst monoliths.
Johnson Matthey proves to the EPA that the US emissions regulations can be met using rhodium-platinum catalysts.
Johnson Matthey and Ricardo demonstrate the first catalyst-equipped car to meet US standards at 50,000 miles. First contract with Volkswagen.
The first catalysts with 200 cells per square inch (cpsi) and walls 0.3 mm thick, are shipped to automotive manufacturers.
Johnson Matthey production plants open in Royston, UK and Pennsylvania, USA.
The first cars fitted with oxidation catalysts reach showrooms in the USA. Unleaded petrol is widely available.
Federal court says EPA has authority to regulate leaded gasoline. By June 1979 nearly half all US gasoline is unleaded.
Japanese vehicle emissions standards come into effect.
Johnson Matthey receives its first Queen’s Award for Technological Achievement for the development of platinum-rhodium catalysts.
US Clean Air Act amendments agreed to tighten emissions standards further from 1981 onwards
Johnson Matthey wins the MacRobert Award for Engineering for the development of catalyst systems for controlling vehicle exhaust emissions.
Three-way-catalysts (TWC) introduced to meet the strict new emissions standards under the amended Clean Air Act.
UK Government commits to introduce unleaded gasoline by 1990.
The European Community (EC) confirms new standards effectively mandating catalysts from January 1993.
VW Golf is world’s first diesel car with factory-fitted oxidation catalyst.
Johnson Matthey plant opens in Brussels, Belgium, to serve the EU market.
Johnson Matthey files a patent for the Continuously Regenerating Trap (CRT®) filter technology.
New legislation introduced in Japan sets more stringent vehicle NOx emissions limits.
Johnson Matthey plant opens in Germiston, Johannesburg, South Africa.
First EU legislation introduced to restrict diesel emissions.
Johnson Matthey opens manufacturing and technical facilities in Japan.
Euro 1 emissions standards that require the use of catalytic converters come into effect.
Phase-in of Tier 1 emissions standards for light duty vehicles begins in USA.
Johnson Matthey opens new manufacturing facilities in Querétaro, Mexico.
Johnson Matthey launches Continuously Regenerating Trap (CRT®) retrofit technology for controlling emissions from heavy-duty diesel vehicles.
Euro 2 emissions standards are introduced requiring the use of diesel oxidation catalysts.
Johnson Matthey develops CRT® technology to meet emissions legislation for the light duty diesel market.
Johnson Matthey opens plant in Nilai, near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Johnson Matthey opens plant in Pilar, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
National Low Emissions Vehicle (NLEV) standards take effect in the USA.
Johnson Matthey new plant opens in Royston, UK
Johnson Matthey receives Millennium Product Award for CRT® technology
EU emissions standards for all petrol and diesel road vehicles become more stringent with the introduction of Euro 3/III emissions standards.
Johnson Matthey opens plant in Manesar, India.
Johnson Matthey awarded Royal Academy of Engineering MacRobert Award for the development and commercialisation of CRT® technology.
Johnson Matthey opens plant in Shanghai, China
Phase-in of Tier 2 US emissions standards for non-road engines begins.
Honda Foundation Award – for autocatalyst development and the work contributed to this by Dr Barry Cooper
Strict particulate matter (PM) limits introduced for heavy duty diesel (HDD) vehicles requiring the use of retrofit catalysed particulate filters.
Phase in of US Tier II emissions standards begins. Tier II complaint vehicles are up to 99% cleaner than vehicles sold in the 1960s.
China introduces legislation equivalent to Euro 2 across the whole country.
Johnson Matthey starts production of autocatalysts in Kitsuregawa, Japan.
Japanese Post-New Long Term (PNLT) emissions standards for heavy duty diesel engines introduced with full implementation by 2009.
Euro 4/IV emissions standards for light and heavy duty vehicles are introduced. Exhaust aftertreatment required on European heavy duty vehicles for the first time.
Phase-in of Stage IIIA Euro emissions standards for non-road engines begins.
Phase-in of Tier 3 US emissions standards for non-road engines begins.
Phase-in period of US emissions standards for heavy duty diesel engines begins. Tighter PM limits means diesel particulate filters (DPFs) are fitted to new vehicles for the first time.
Johnson Matthey announces plan to build two new catalyst plants in Macedonia and USA.
New catalysed soot filter manufacturing plant opens in Royston.
Johnson Matthey opens an autocatalyst facility in Korea – its fifth in the Asian Region.
Johnson Matthey finalises the acquisition of ceramics and catalysts company, Argillon.
Euro V emissions standards for heavy duty diesel engines are introduced.
Phase-in of Tier 4 US emissions standards for non-road engines is introduced.
Euro 5 & 6 emissions standards for light duty vehicles are officially published.
Johnson Matthey opens an autocatalyst plant in Krasnoyarsk, Russia.
Johnson Matthey wins two Queen’s Awards for Enterprise in both the Innovation and International Trade categories.
New emission control catalyst manufacturing facilities are opened in Macedonia, Smithfield in the USA and Shanghai, China.
Phase-in of Stage IIIB European emissions standards for non-road engines begins.
Johnson Matthey products appear in the Make it in Great Britain exhibition which celebrated the importance and success of British manufacturing.
Euro VI Heavy Duty Diesel emissions legislation is introduced.
Expansion of Johnson Matthey facilities in Macedonia.
Euro 6 emission standards are introduced in September. Phase-in of Stage IIIB Euro emissions standards for non-road engines.
Johnson Matthey wins the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise in Sustainable Development.
Johnson Matthey celebrates 40 years of autocatalyst production in Royston.
Expansion of Johnson Matthey’s facilities in Royston is completed.