A memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed between Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) and Japan’s Energy for a new Era (JERA) which will see the pair conduct a collaborative study on transporting ammonia for use as a fuel. Shipments will also be made to JERA’s Hekinan Power Station in Aichi Prefecture, Japan, which is scheduled to begin the commercial operation of large-scale co-firing of ammonia fuel toward the end of the decade.
Under the MoU, MOL and JERA aim to develop a large ammonia carrier vessel while also establishing a safe transportation system. Additional topics will also be examined and include installing and operating propulsion engines on board the vessels which are capable of using ammonia as a fuel. The ammonia fuel carriers are designed to be suitable for use within domestic thermal power plants and their receiving stations.
The pair’s ammonia-fueled large ammonia carrier J-FLEX is currently under development and will be used for transporting large volumes of liquefied ammonia. Designed with flexibility in mind, the vessel will be capable of fitting into Japanese ports where steaming coals are currently taken away by steaming coal carrier.
Through the partnership the duo aims to establish an ammonia transportation method as fuel for power generation in addition to establishing a stated world’s first supply chain for ammonia fuel.