Why are hydrogen vehicles a popular choice for Korea’s growing green car industry?
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Why are hydrogen vehicles a popular choice for Korea’s growing green car industry?

The Korean Government has recently signed numerous memoranda of understanding with Hyundai Motor Company to promote the development and deployment of hydrogen vehicles in Korea. Given that electric vehicles (EVs) are already available and there are community concerns regarding the safety of hydrogen, why are hydrogen vehicles a popular choice for Korea’s growing green car industry?

The brief answer is that hydrogen vehicles are lighter and travel greater distances in a single charge compared to EVs. For example, a hydrogen truck can travel just over 600 km in a single, three to five minute charge whereas EVs can only travel approximately 350 km and their charging times range from 20 minutes to 8 hours.

However, hydrogen safety concerns have been raised by Korean communities citing the incident whereby a hydrogen tank exploded in Gangneung in 2019. To address these concerns, Korea is increasing safety standards, particularly for low-pressure facilities which are not required to pass the same rigorous testing as high pressure facilities.

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