Sarawak to widely promote use of hydrogen-powered public transport, including automated trackless trams

Sarawak to widely promote use of hydrogen-powered public transport, including automated trackless trams

The Sarawak Economic Development Corporation (SEDC) says it will widely promote the use of hydrogen-powered public transport vehicles in the state. According to its chairman Tan Sri Datuk Amar Abdul Aziz Hussain, this will include hydrogen-powered autonomous rapid transit (ART) vehicles as well as buses.

He said that one ART vehicle is ready and would be coming in soon. It will be trialled on the highway in Samarahan for a period of a year, the Borneo Post reports.

He added that more ART vehicles will start coming in next year, and when the required number is obtained the state will begin commercial operations, which is expected to be by the end of 2025. When asked how many ART vehicles would arrive next year, he replied that they will come in batches. “Bit by bit, maybe three or four units at one time,” he said.

The ART system consists of a trackless tram that is outfitted with rubber tyres to run on tarmac instead of on rails as required by trains. These can run autonomously on virtual routes, directed by road markings.

Sarawak to widely promote use of hydrogen-powered public transport, including automated trackless trams

In the case of the hydrogen-powered system that will be used by Sarawak, the Chinese-made ART vehicle measures 30.2 metres in length, 2.65 metres in width and 3.7 metres in height. It can reach speeds of up to 70 km/h and has a 241-passenger capacity with a revised seating layout.

Back in January, Abdul Aziz said that SEDC Energy would produce hydrogen to power the state’s ART system. “We will require about two tonnes of hydrogen a day for the ART next year and we need to ramp this up to five tonnes a day. As such, we need to produce electrolysers for that and we want to produce our own. We don’t want to import from other countries and add to the cost,” he said then.

The state is aiming to become a leader in hydrogen economy in the country, having stated plans to begin large-scale commercial production and export of hydrogen by 2027. development of a new plant located in Tanjung Kidurong, Bintulu, was announced last year. Dubbed the H2biscus project, the plant will eventually produce 220,000 tonnes of green hydrogen, 630,000 tonnes of green ammonia and 600,000 tonnes of blue ammonia when it is up and running.

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Anthony Lim

Anthony Lim believes that nothing is better than a good smoke and a car with character, with good handling aspects being top of the prize heap. Having spent more than a decade and a half with an English tabloid daily never being able to grasp the meaning of brevity or being succinct, he wags his tail furiously at the idea of waffling - in greater detail - about cars and all their intrinsic peculiarities here.



  • seancorr on Mar 23, 2023 at 12:46 pm

    This is the way

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0
  • Kajeng on Mar 23, 2023 at 1:12 pm

    That’s great.
    In fact, we need a ART route map, integrated to Train route map too.

    Double Deckers may be safer than long Tram and more suitable too.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0
    • Jim Button on Mar 23, 2023 at 5:04 pm

      Easy task: The last railway line in Sarawak closed in 1931. No need to integrate ART route into railmap as Sarawak doesn’t have one.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • Toko Sheng Siong on Mar 23, 2023 at 2:01 pm

    Electrolyser plant can produced how many tonnes of hydrogen per day?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0
  • Sad that Sarawak has to come out with its own money to provide public transport for the masses. It shows how Fed is over focusing on KV instead of the whole country.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 5
  • Hii Gregory on Mar 23, 2023 at 8:52 pm

    This will place Sarawak as the first region in Malaysia to use hydrogen powered ART. Congratulations to Premier Abang Jo

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4
    • Firster on Mar 24, 2023 at 3:38 pm

      It’s not only the first region in Malajysia, it will be:
      -the first ART outside China
      -the first ART that will be autonomous (all chinese ART have a driver and steering wheel)
      -the first ART route that is longer than 19km
      -the first ART that will run on hydrogen

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
  • Leanner on Mar 24, 2023 at 12:21 pm

    I love that there are more public transport options. But lets call a Spade a Spade. It’s an articulated bus with a pointy nose. “ART” but it looks like it still needs a driver. Rubber wheel. Trackless=shares the same road.
    Silicone Valley speak won’t solve everything but proper implementation and adoption of the public will. Let’s hope there are program that promotes the use and services location that meets demand

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0
  • Athies on Mar 27, 2023 at 10:09 pm

    Awesome… hydrogen is the way to go

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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