South Africa has launched a R15-million feasibility study which will identify particular components that can be manufactured for fuel cell units. The Isondo Precious Minerals (IPM) study was launched by Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies on 11 February. It is intended to accelerate mineral beneficiation and localisation of fuel cell manufacturing in South Africa.
There has been a rise in the technological development of fuel cells with demand for platinum, an important precious metal of which South Africa has 96% of world reserves,in the fuel sector. South Africa has honed in on two potential uses of fuel cell technology ie the small power unit that could be used to power remote areas 20 kilometres away from the existing grid connection and use in powering underground equipment within the mining industry. The study is envisaged to be completed in a year's time.