[Source: the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport]
South Korea envisions creating “hydrogen cities” by 2022 where hydrogen fuel is used as power main functions such as heating and cooling, electricity, and transportation.
According to plans announced by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport on Thursday, it will select a city for a pilot hydrogen project to test related technologies in residential and transportation sectors. A total three test areas – which will each be up to 10 square kilometers inside a city – will be selected in December after fair review based on project proposals from local governments. The ministry will consider factors such as project feasibility, validity, and willingness to promote hydrogen-related policies in the future.
The ministry will provide 50 percent of total project cost with maximum 29 billion won ($24.2 million) limit to each of the three selected areas, which will be used to plan hydrogen-friendly city and establish key infrastructures such as integrated operations center. Each test city will have a joint residential complex with 440 kilowatt fuel cell that uses hydrogen as energy source, commercial building with 100 kilowatt power, an integrated operations platform center, hydrogen pipe, and city gas ejector.
According to the ministry, a hydrogen city is a place equipped with a “hydrogen ecosystem” where hydrogen production, storage, transfer, and utilization are arranged altogether. Citizens are also offered healthier lifestyle as it uses hydrogen as main energy source.
The ministry said that joint residential complex and individual buildings in each of the three test cities will use hydrogen as energy source to power cooling and heating systems and electricity. The process will involve transforming chemical energy released from when oxygen in the air responds to hydrogen charged in a fuel cell.
The test cities will also be equipped with a hydrogen energy-based transportation system, the ministry said. Bus transfer centers, parking spaces, and bus garages will be equipped with hydrogen charging stations.
The integrated operations center will be responsible for real-time monitoring of hydrogen supply, storage, and transfer condition as well as of safety in test cities. All areas will be required to have a safety control system where all systems are automatically halted in the advent of accident.
By Choi Hee-seok and Lee Eun-joo
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