Senior officials of Hyundai Motor, Korea East-West Power and Deokyang pose after agreeing to cooperate in producing electricity with hydrogen car technology on April 11.

Automaker starts pilot project to produce power with hydrogen tech

Electricity is provided by power plants or solar panel operators. But the conventional wisdom may be wrong as an automaker will start to produce electricity with hydrogen car technology.

Toward that ends, Hyundai Motor recently signed a memorandum of understanding with two domestic energy companies Korea East-West Power (EWP) and Deokyang.

The pilot project is about delivering a 1 megawatt (MW) hydrogen fuel cell power facility. Hyundai Motor will build the system with the hydrogen supplied by Deokyang. EWP will manage the facility and sell electricity.

The agreement was finalized on April 11 in a signing ceremony attended by senior executives of the three companies, according to a Hyundai official said.

The use of Hyundai’s proprietary fuel cell technology in the pilot project marks the first time local technology is being used in a fuel cell power facility in Korea in lieu of the foreign technology that the market has been dependent on,” the official said.

The 1MW power facility, scheduled to break ground later this year in Ulsan, will consist of two container-type 500kW generator modules, each loaded with multiple power modules from Hyundai’s flagship fuel cell vehicle NEXO.”

Ulsan is Korea’s seventh-largest metropolitan city with a population of 1.1 million people. The city located in the southeast of the country houses a large-sized automobile factory of Hyundai Motor.

The Seoul-based company said that the new facility will produce enough electricity to power around 2,200 households without emitting any greenhouse gases or pollution as its fuel is hydrogen.

The hydrogen used in the facility will be byproduct hydrogen brought from a nearby petrochemical complex through a pipe network, reducing costs and making use of local energy sources,” the official said.

The pilot project presents an opportunity for Hyundai Motor to take its fuel cell technology beyond the automotive industry to achieve economy of scale, which will subsequently lead to cost competitiveness, job creation, and growth of other related industries.”

The project is in line with the vision of Hyundai, which has channeled its funds and other resources to hydrogen cars.