Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Hyundai Motor, Rotem to develop hydrogen-powered train

Hyundai Motor, Rotem to develop hydrogen-powered train

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Hyundai Motor and Hyundai Rotem are slated to develop a hydrogen-powered tram by next year. HYUNDAI ROTEM/THE KOREA HERALD

Hyundai Motor, Rotem to develop hydrogen-powered train

South Korea’s largest automaker Hyundai Motor and its locomotive arm Hyundai Rotem are slated to develop a hydrogen-powered train by next year, which will be the first of its kind in the nation.

On Monday, Hyundai Rotem said the two companies had agreed to cooperate on developing a train powered by hydrogen. Hyundai Motor plans to deploy hydrogen fuel cell stacks on trains developed and manufactured by Rotem, and to build the system interface between vehicles of the train together.

They plan to develop a hydrogen-powered train that can travel up to 200km per single charge at a maximum speed of 70km/h. The production of the prototype will be completed by next year.

The announcement of the joint project comes after President Moon Jae-in met with Hyundai Motor Group’s de facto leader Chung Eui-sun in Ulsan city, home to the firm’s automobile industries, in January.

There, Moon reiterated the government’s strong willingness to make the nation the global number one in the hydrogen car and fuel cell market by 2030.

A hydrogen-powered train, which works by converting hydrogen into electricity, is eco-friendly as it does not emit air pollutants. It also saves on costs without requiring power infrastructure and maintenance.

Hyundai Motor is a leader in hydrogen vehicles. Its latest fuel cell electric vehicle, Nexo, can travel 609km on a single charge, the longest range in the world for a green car, at a speed of 180km/h. It has also launched hydrogen buses, which travel 440km on a single charge at a speed of 103km/h.

Hyundai Rotem plans to further develop hydrogen-powered trams and locomotives in the future in cooperation with Hyundai Motor.

Separately, a state-run project to develop a hydrogen-powered train is ongoing in Korea.

The state-run Korea Railroad Research Institute started a project to build the train in April last year with an investment of 22 billion won ($18 million) in cooperation with the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport.

By December 2022, the Korea Railroad Research Institute aims to develop the train that can travel more than 600km on a single charge at a speed of more than 110km, together with local train builder Woojin Industrial Systems.

Despite ongoing efforts in both the private and public sectors, challenges remain.

“The reality is that there is no precedent for the development and operation of hydrogen-powered trains. There are still no technological standards, systems, laws and experience in maintenance and engineering,” said Chung Chung-rae, chief of Korea Railroad Corp’s technology division.

A national strategy to boost the industry is necessary, he added.

Globally, many nations, including Japan, China, Europe and the US, are accelerating efforts to develop technologies and commercialise hydrogen-powered trains.

In 2015, China launched a hydrogen-powered tram, the first of its kind in the world. Last year, French rail transport company Alstom developed a hydrogen-powered train for the first time in the world. It is currently in operation in Germany.

According to a report released by consulting firm McKinsey & Co in 2017, hydrogen energy will create added value of around $2.5 trillion and add new 30 million jobs by 2050. THE KOREA HERALD/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Kingdom one of safest to visit in Covid-19 era’

    The Ministry of Tourism on January 12 proclaimed Cambodia as one of the safest countries to visit in light of the Kingdom having been ranked number one in the world by the Senegalese Economic Prospective Bureau for its success in handling the Covid-19 pandemic. In rankings

  • Ministry mulls ASEAN+3 travel bubble

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to launch a travel bubble allowing transit between Cambodia and 12 other regional countries in a bid to resuscitate the tourism sector amid crushing impact of the ongoing spread of Covid-19, Ministry of Tourism spokesman Top Sopheak told The Post on

  • Courts’ decisions now published as reference source

    The Ministry of Justice has published 44 verdicts from civil litigation cases which can be used as models for court precedents and for study by the public and those who work in pertinent fields. Publication of the verdicts on December 31 came as the result of joint

  • Reeling in Cambodia’s real estate sector

    A new norm sets the scene but risks continue to play out in the background A cold wind sweeps through the streets of Boeung Trabek on an early January morning as buyers and traders engage in commerce under bright blue skies. From a distance, the

  • Quarantine site in north Phnom Penh inaugurated

    A four-building quarantine centre in Phnom Penh’s Prek Pnov district was formally inaugurated on January 6. The centre can house up to 500 people, according to Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng. At the inauguration ceremony, Sreng said the municipal hall had cooperated with the Ministry

  • China firm to develop Mondulkiri airport

    Tourism to the Kingdom’s northeast corridor could experience a remarkable metamorphosis after the government decided in principle of a Chinese company to study and develop a proposal to build a regional-level airport in Mondulkiri province, according to industry insiders. The Council of Ministers said