California, which is the center of the U.S. hydrogen industry, plans to increase the number of hydrogen charging stations to 1,000 by 2030. Hanwha Cimarron is building a high-pressure tank plant in Alabama, with an investment of about $51 million. When completed in the second half of 2022, the plant can produce about 4,000 high-pressure tanks annually.
In 2021, Hanwha Solutions, a key unit of South Korea's Hanwha Group, acquired Cimarron Composites, which originally began as an internal venture at NASA, and changed its name to Hanwha Cimarron, which produces Neptune capable of transporting 1,200 kilograms of hydrogen gas in a standard 40-foot container.
Hanwha Solutions aims to produce large hydrogen transportation trailers or tanks for charging stations through Cimarron. "We are strengthening hydrogen tank operations in Germany and other European countries to secure new customers," Ryu Doo-hyung, head of Hanwha Solutions' advanced materials division, said in a statement on June 21. "With continuous investment, we will become the world's No. 1 hydrogen tank company by 2030."
The group is nurturing green hydrogen as one of its next growth engines. Green hydrogen is produced from water using renewable power while blue hydrogen is derived from natural gas with carbon capture technology.
Hydrogen is extremely flammable when it is mixed with very small amounts of air. The liquefaction of hydrogen requires cooling to a temperature of minus 253 degrees Celsius and subsequent storage in cryogenic containers. The advantage of liquefied hydrogen is its high density compared to compressed gas, which means that more energy can be contained in a given volume for easy transportation.
Hanwha Solutions thinks Cimarron's technology can be used for aerospace, ships and urban air mobility (UAM), which is an ecosystem covering personal air vehicles and infrastructure. Hanwha is a key member of UAM Team Korea, a public-private consultative body launched in June to commercialize drone taxis in 2025.
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