Hyundai Motor Group's Groundbreaking Green Hydrogen Initiative Turning Food Waste into Clean Energy

Hyundai Motor Group’s Groundbreaking Green Hydrogen Initiative: Turning Food Waste into Clean Energy

Hyundai Motor Group is taking a major step towards advancing green hydrogen production with a strategic partnership with the Sudokwon Landfill Site Management Corporation (SL Corp.). In a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed on August 29, 2023, the Group is set to demonstrate the utilization of biogas, generated during the food waste treatment process, for large-scale hydrogen production.

A Step Towards Carbon Neutrality

This collaborative effort aligns with Hyundai’s commitment to establishing a robust green hydrogen ecosystem. The envisioned system is expected to produce an impressive 216 kilograms of green hydrogen per day over the course of the next two years, using the biogas derived from the SL Corporation. To put this into perspective, this quantity of green hydrogen can charge more than 34 units of NEXO, Hyundai Motor’s hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle.

Waste-to-Energy Concept

This initiative revolves around the concept of ‘waste-to-energy,’ where the biogas, primarily composed of methane, produced through the fermentation of food waste, will serve as a renewable energy source. It reflects a circular economy approach where waste materials are repurposed to generate clean and sustainable energy.

Roles in the Partnership

Under the MOU, each partner brings a unique set of capabilities to the table:

Hyundai Motor and Kia will collaborate on establishing an integrated system for the catalytic reaction process.
Hyundai Engineering & Construction (Hyundai E&C) will take charge of developing gas selection separation technology within the hydrogen production process.
The Sudokwon Landfill Site Management Corporation (SL Corp.) will investigate biogas pretreatment technology and offer research sites and facilities, including the crucial biogas itself, as the primary raw material for green hydrogen production.
Diverse Sustainable Initiatives

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Hyundai Motor Group is not limiting its efforts to green hydrogen alone. Alongside green hydrogen production capabilities, the Group is also actively researching renewable synthetic fuel (e-fuel) production technologies. Additionally, there are plans to incorporate recycled synthetic fuels, obtained through the hydrogen production process, into existing internal combustion engine vehicles.

Towards Carbon Neutrality

The ultimate goal of these initiatives is to bring Hyundai Motor Group closer to achieving carbon neutrality. This endeavor goes beyond green hydrogen, extending into the synthesis of clean hydrogen and carbon monoxide, which could eventually lead to the generation of renewable plastic materials.

Contributing to National Goals

The Sudokwon Landfill Site Management Corporation (SL Corp.) expects this partnership to contribute significantly to the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) and provide a stable supply of clean hydrogen. This hydrogen is instrumental in executing the 10th Basic Plan on Electricity Demand and Supply, reinforcing Hyundai’s commitment to sustainable energy solutions.

A Global Carbon Neutrality Leader

In the words of Seung Hyun Hong, Head of Materials Research and Engineering Center at Hyundai Motor and Kia, “Through this agreement, we intend to conduct in-depth research and demonstrate resource-circulating energy technologies to achieve carbon neutrality. We are committed to leading the industry as a global carbon neutrality leader by developing high value-added technologies, such as e-fuel and renewable plastic interior materials production, in the future.”

Researching for Carbon Neutrality

Earlier this year, Hyundai Motor Group established a joint research laboratory for carbon neutrality in partnership with five domestic universities. This collaboration aims to preemptively develop technologies that align with the Group’s vision of achieving carbon neutrality.

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Hyundai Motor Group’s innovative partnership with the Sudokwon Landfill Site Management Corporation marks a significant milestone in the journey towards a sustainable and environmentally friendly future. By turning food waste into clean energy, the Group demonstrates its commitment to pioneering solutions for a greener world.

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