North Korea has sharpened its focus on technology under Kim Jong Un. File Photo by Andrew Wong/UPI | License Photo
Jan. 16 (UPI) -- A North Korean university has self-developed a frequency changer or frequency converter, according to state media.
Pyongyang propaganda service Meari said Thursday the information technology exchange center of Pyongyang University of Mechanical Engineering has developed a frequency changer, used to convert bulk alternating current power from one frequency to another.
State media said North Korea previously imported key components of the converter from overseas, but the policy "did not guarantee economic efficiency."
North Korea is under heavy sanctions, and trade has been curtailed or restricted.
The new North Korean frequency changer has been placed into use. Its features have reached a "high level" and has been "scientifically proven" to be a cost-saving and energy-saving product, Meari said.
Frequency changers or converters have various uses, such as speed control of alternating current motors used for pumps and fans.
Foreign analysts who have spent time in the Kim Jong Un regime have said the country frequently copes with power outages.
Kim has stressed the importance of making leaps in North Korea's technology industry, but he has turned down cooperating with the South, a global tech powerhouse.
South Korean news service NK Economy reported Thursday the Korea Institute of Science and Technology Information, which operates under Seoul's science ministry, has been holding private inter-Korea academic conferences that included North Koreans.
Choi Hee-yoon, the president of KISTI, said the South Korean institution is seeking cooperation with a number of North Korean science and technology organizations.
"There are challenges because of sanctions, but we will find an area of cooperation that does not fall under North Korea sanctions," Choi said, according to NK Economy.