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ABB, SINTEF to test viability of fuel cells in ship propulsion

ABB and SINTEF Ocean are undertaking groundbreaking research to test the viability of fuel cells as an energy source for main ship propulsion, ABB said in a statement.

The new research project seeks to provide the answers required for fuel cell technology to be delivered at the scale needed to power commercial and passenger ships.

The testing methodology, to be developed at SINTEF Ocean’s Trondheim-based laboratory, will use two 30kW fuel cells, set up to model the operation and control of a complete marine power system in a megawatt-scale propulsion plant. ABB’s own software together with SINTEF Oceans vessel simulator capabilities will imitate and play back different load profiles and diesel/battery/fuel cell combinations, and tested in a scaled down laboratory environment.

The trials will explore more than the technicalities of scaling-up and optimized fuel cell/battery combinations alone. “SINTEF is contributing the hydrogen supply and infrastructure, while having a test lab gives ABB and SINTEF Ocean the opportunity to increase in-house competence for integration, control and safety of fuel cell technology in marine applications,” says Anders Valland, research manager for maritime energy systems at SINTEF Ocean. "SINTEF has extensive capabilities with regard to fuel cell technology, maritime energy systems, electric power systems and power electronics, which gives us an edge in developing innovative solutions."

“Fuel cell technology is maturing quickly. These trials are expected to provide the platform for fuel cells to build on, so that they can take a position in the maritime sector that is competitive with fossil fuels,” says Jostein Bogen, product manager for energy storage and fuel cells at ABB Marine & Ports. “Finding unknowns and coping with them in a controlled environment, rather than risking surprises on board ship will be central to these trials.”

Another key objective will be establishing how to enhance the control of fuel cell plant in combination with energy storage, and how to optimise efficiency, reliability and the lifetime of fuel cell stacks.

“We will be seeking the decisive and practical solutions to develop fuel cell technology for main propulsion,” says Kristoffer Dønnestad, R&D engineer, ABB Marine & Ports, Trondheim. “Research will focus not only on fuel flow and fuel handling, but on what a hydrogen ship bunkering infrastructure might look like.”

The laboratory in Trondheim has been a key research resource for ABB, providing a focus for research into the fine details of its design innovations and helping to bring its most advanced maritime technologies to market, including ABB Onboard DC GridTM.

Using hydrogen as fuel, the proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEM) separates electrons and protons, with protons passing through and electrons used as electrical output. Hydrogen is converted directly to electricity and heat without combustion. PEM fuel cells operate at a lower temperature, are lighter and more compact than their solid oxide counterparts.

ABB is a front-runner in sustainable marine e-mobility covering electric vehicle power, protection, control and installation. It has also had close involvement in ferry projects deploying battery power over short distances or for hybrid power plants to optimize ship efficiency. Battery power will certainly be key to meeting Norway’s target for zero ship emissions in the Fjords from 2026, according to Bogen.

 

Certainly, Bogen believes that deep-sea shipping will not have to wait until 2050 for the combustion-free generation of electricity, heat and clean water. “With the use of renewables to produce hydrogen for fuel cells and stored energy for batteries, the entire chain can be clean,” he says.

Wärtsilä to supply engines, waterjets and LNG systems for largest fast ferry

The largest ever high-speed catamaran, which will operate on LNG fuel, will feature a fully integrated scope of supply from the technology group Wärtsilä. The 125 metres long vessel is being built at the Armon Gijón shipyard in Spain for Spanish ferry operator Baleària.

The ability of Wärtsilä to deliver a fully integrated scope, including the engines, the waterjets, and the LNG fuel storage and supply system, together with all the related auxiliary systems, was an important option for both the owner and shipyard.

“High efficiency, reduced operating costs, and environmental sustainability were the key values in the design of this exciting new high-speed ferry. Wärtsilä has a strong focus and excellent track record in all these areas, as well as unique integration capabilities. This project redefines the conventional standard for this type of vessel, enabling ‘greener’ operations and lower lifecycle operating costs. We have worked closely in the past with both the yard and the owners, and we are proud to be once again their vessel solutions provider,” says Stefan Wiik, Vice President, Marine Power Solutions, Wärtsilä.

“This ferry will very much shape the future for high-speed, gas powered, catamarans and trimarans. This completely new design, which optimizes the performance of the ship, not only in terms of speed but also in seakeeping, and which utilises Wärtsilä’s LNG technology, makes this a breakthrough vessel. The use of LNG allows us to fulfil our commitment to the environment and to energy efficiency, while also keeping us one step ahead of the new pollutant gas reduction regulations scheduled for 2020,” says Juan M. Paino, CTO of Armón.

"Baleària's strategic commitment to LNG responds to criteria of social responsibility and economic profitability. The axiom, less pollution, greater economic profitability, works fully with liquefied natural gas," says the CEO of Baleària, Adolfo Utor,

The vessel will operate on four highly efficient Wärtsilä 31DF dual-fuel engines, four Wärtsilä waterjets, and the Wärtsilä LNGPac fuel gas storage and supply system. It will have a service speed of 35 knots, and a top speed of more than 40 knots. The storage tanks give the ferry a range of 400 nautical miles. The equipment is scheduled for delivery to the yard in the latter half of 2019.

 

When delivered, the ferry will be capable of carrying 1200 passengers and 500 cars, or trucks covering a length of 500 metres plus 250 cars. Baleària will invest 90 million euros in the construction of this fast ferry, which is scheduled to start the aluminum cut next December and to enter into service in the summer of 2020.

 

Telenor Maritime to supply mobile ecosystem on Brittany Ferries’ ships

Telenor Maritime, the global maritime mobile operator, partner with Brittany Ferries and announces the introduction of the mobile ecosystem onboard their fleet of ferries and cruise-ferries, deploying a connectivity platform with Premium Wi-Fi, VSAT and Mobile Broadband Backhaul.

Additionally Honfleur, the clean, green, LNG-powered newbuild arriving in June 2019 is equipped with 3G services. Digital services can be enabled supporting the complete digital value chain vastly enhancing the customer experience onboard.

“We are delighted to be in a position to develop our partnership and services with Brittany Ferries, the major cross-channel ferry company operating a large fleet of ferries and cruise ferries between France and the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Spain, and between the United Kingdom and Spain. We are confident that our communications services will substantially enhance the customer journey on the ships we are upgrading. This is yet another important step for Telenor Maritime’s service-expansion in Europe,” said Jan Erik Norli, CSO of Telenor Maritime.

“Our partnership with Telenor is one we value and we look forward to working together as new ships like Honfleur join the Brittany Ferries fleet,” said Joëlle Croc, Brittany Ferries’director of sales and customer experience. “Connectivity drives all our customer communications, so it has never been more important to work with partners we can count on.”

“Being a digital frontrunner, we heavily invest time and effort into developing digital services leading the way in developing the customer journey. To succeed, it is essential having a partner such as Brittany Ferries, equally focused on exploring the digital arena,” Jan Erik Norli continued.

Scanship bags contract with Carnival Cruise Line

Scanship Holding ASA, with its subsidiary Scanship AS, has entered into a contract with Miami-based Carnival Cruise Line, a part of Carnival Corporation & PLC, to support the line's ongoing commitment to advanced watewater purification systems in accordance with the IMO MARPOL MEPC 227(64). "We at Scanship are thrilled to be working with Carnival Cruise Line and are impressed by their commitment for cleaner oceans and sustainable seafaring", says Henrik Badin, CEO of Scanship in a statement.

 

Deltamarin and Elomatic sign design contract for second Global class ship

Deltamarin and Elomatic, both from Turku Finland, have signed an agreement with MV Werften Wismar GmbH for the basic and detail design of a second Global class cruise ship of Dream Cruise, which is part f the Genting Hing Kong group, which also owns the shipbuilder.

The value of the contract is approximately €16.5 million for Deltamarin and €17 million for Elomatic. The vessel will be built in parallel in Wismar and Rostock, Germany. The contract was signed on 26.10.2018 and design work has already commenced.

The vessel is the second in the series of Global class vessels. In addition to engineering, Deltamarin and Elomatic will also provide site services at the shipyard during the construction of the vessel. Deltamarin and Elomatic also did a large part of the basic and detail design of the first vessel in the cruise ship series.

The Global class vessels are some of the world’s largest cruise ships. When the first vessel is completed, it will be the largest ever built in Germany. The second vessel being designed will be approximately 342 meters long and 46.4 metres wide with a gross register tonnage of 204,000. The ships are designed specifically for the Asian market and can carry up to 9,500 passengers.

 

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