Hydrogen in the maritime sector is on the agenda this week. The Norwegian Public Roads Administration recommends hydrogen for the ferries on the Vestfjorden-connection, but the Government has not made a decision yet. We can also read about overwhelming interest by shipping companies for a hydrogen bulkcarrier for Norwegian companies, while Ballard introduces a maritime FC-module to power ships. Lastly we’ll have a look at million dollars funding in California and a wind project in Denmark.
Hydrogen or biogas in Vestfjorden?
Statens Vegvesen (The Norwegian Public Roads Administration) is ready to present a tender on four new hydrogen ferries on the Vestfjorden-connection (connecting the city of Bodø with the famous Lofoten Islands) from 2023. However, the Norwegian Government wants to examine the use of biogas as well before they make any decisions. The Ministry of Transport has not concluded yet, but a conclusion is expected during September. The importance of hydrogen is emphasised in the newly presented Norwegian Hydrogen Strategy, and it has been questioned that the Government does not follow their own strategy and goes all in on biogas on the connection.
This is an important decission for the hydrogen future in Norway. Use of hydrogen can give advantages in the hydrogen market, especially in the maritime sector, and the Vestfjorden-connection can be the second connection with hydrogen ferries in Norway. Todays’ contract on the connection expires in the end of 2022.
Hydrogen ferries in Vestfjorden – comments by Zero
Hydrogen ferries in Vestfjorden should be the start of the Norwegian hydrogen investment, and it will be an important step to ensure a hydrogen value chain in Norway. The organisation Zero says that a hydrogen powered connection over Vestfjorden will ensure a large enough volume of hydrogen to get the first large-scale hydrogen production in operation.
The hydrogen ferries will be the first of many projects within hydrogen in maritime and transport sector. The demand on zero-emission in the ferry tenders has put the Norwegian maritime cluster in a world leading position within green technology. Zero supports The Norwegian Public Roads Administration’s recommendation with hydrogen in Vestfjorden, and the Government should do the same.
Overwhelming interest for hydrogen bulkcarrier
Felleskjøpet Agri and Heidelberg Cement challenges shipping companies to new thinking and zero-emission bulkcarriers, In practice, shipowners have to go for liquid hydrogen or ammonia produced with zero emissions, and the response has been overwhelming, according to the companies.
The use of biofuel in 50 years old diesel engine technologies is not innovative enough for the companies, according to the Chartering Manager of Heidelberg Cement North Europe. Felleskjøpet Agri and Heidelberg Cement announced in July that they will offer a 20 years contract to the shipping company that can offer them a zero emission bulkcarrier by 2023. They will choose the best suited shipping company by December, for further development of detailed solutions in spring 2021.
Heidelberg Cement is transporting 500 000 tons of stones and gravels from Western to Eastern Norway, while Felleskjøpet Agri transports grains the opposite direction. The ship is calculated to use one ton of hydrogen each day, with possible bunkering opportunities in Rogaland County or in the Oslo Fjord.
Ballard introduces zero-emission FC-module to power ships
This week Ballard Power Systems announced the launch of the fuel cell industry´s first module designed for primary propulsion power in marine vessels. The fuell cell product FCwave is a 200 kW module unit that can be scaled up to muli-megawatt power level.
The FCwave can be used to power marine vessels such as passenger and car ferries, river push boats and fishing boats. It can also be used as stationary electrical power to support hotel and auxiliary load on cruise ships and other vessels while docked at port. The International Maritime Organization has set targets to lower emissions by 50 percent by 2050 in the marine sector. This product could be a game changer for the introduction of hydrogen to the maritime area.
California approves 39,1 million dollars for hydrogen stations
California Energy Commission regulators have approved 39,1 million dollars of funding for a total of 36 hydrogen stations to service passenger vehicles. The funds were awarded to FirstElement, Iwanti and Shell. Another 87 stations were also recommended for funding, meaning California could have 123 new hydrogen stations. The state has currently 42 hydrogen stations opened.
Wind-to-Hydrogen project one step closer to production
Siemens Gamesa is partnering up with Green Hydrogen Systems (GHS) for a wind-to-hydrogen project in Denmark. The production of hydrogen is scheduled to start in January 2021 and the project involves a three megawatt Siemens wind turbine that will power a GHS elecrolyser.
The green hydrogen will be stored and used for subsequent distribution and used as fuel for hydrogen-powered buses, taxis and cars, while the oxygen will be released into the atmosphere.
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