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S. Korea's only ultra-cold chain storage facility prepares for Pfizer's arrival Updated: 2021-02-26 07:02:50 KST

This ultra-cold storage center in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi-do Province, was originally used to store imported tuna.
But since last October, the center has been emptying out its stock, to prepare for the arrival of the Pfizer vaccines, which need to be stored at minus 70 degrees Celsius.

"This is the only facility in South Korea capable of generating such ultra-cold temperatures. So all the incoming Pfizer vaccines must be stored here, unless they are transported directly from the airport to the vaccination centers."

Some 8-hundred square meters of floor space have been allocated for enough Pfizer vaccines to inoculate some 10 million people.

"So I am fully kitted out in protective suit to go inside the storage and see just how cold it is.
Right now, the mercury is pointing at minus 73.6 degrees Celsius.
Here, I have wet towels.
As soon as I pull it out, the water quickly freezes stiff.
And it's extremely hard to breathe even with this mask on."

The center runs on liquefied natural gasand uses minus 1-hundred 62 degrees extreme cold air, generated using a phase change technique while transforming LNG,from its liquid state into gas.
Compared to using electricity, this can reduce costs by up to 80 percent.
Anyone entering the container can stay for no longer than 10 to 15 minutes, due to the possibility of lung damage.
So, the vaccines are taken out of storage,and packaged in a separate section in milder conditions.
That's where the center will also be stocking Moderna and other vaccines,which require less extreme temperatures.
The mRNA vaccines, like those by Pfizer and Moderna, will be stored in super freezers, which will be installed at the 2-hundred-50 vaccinations centers nationwide.
Lee Kyung-eun, Arirang News.
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