Hydrogen fuel cell supplier PowerCell has signed an agreement for the delivery of hydrogen fuel cells to two ships operating on Norway’s longest ferry route. The order, which has a total value of €19.2m (US$20.4m) is stated to be the largest hydrogen project to date in the maritime sector.
For the two vessels owned and operated by Torghatten Nord, PowerCell will deliver its PowerCellution Marine System 200 which will enable the ferries to produce approximately 6MW of power each. During operations the ferries will be powered predominantly by green hydrogen, resulting in an estimated CO2 emission reduction of 26,500 metric tons each year.
PowerCell will work in collaboration with SEAM, a Norwegian systems developer and integrator of low- and zero-emission solutions which will be responsible for fitting the electrical systems on board the vessels. Delivery of the ferries is scheduled for Q4 of 2024.
The announcement comes as part of a Norwegian government initiative which aims to ensure that all ferries crossing the Vestfjorden between Lofoten and Bodø in Northern Norway are emission-free. Due to the four hour crossing time, green hydrogen was selected as the most suitable fuel type to supply the vessels with power.
“This is a groundbreaking project not just for PowerCell or Norway, but for the entire marine industry, and one that we are very happy and proud to be part of,” said Richard Berkling, CEO of PowerCell. “Norway led the development in the introduction of liquefied natural gas in the marine industry and now the country is taking an important step to establish green hydrogen as a clean energy source for our hard to abate sector. Our solutions are perfectly suited for demanding applications where operational reliability, high power density and compact format are important parameters.
“The transition to electrification and emission-free energy is accelerating and is supported by supranational initiatives such as the EU’s Green Deal and the large-scale investments to reach the Paris Agreement. In Norway alone, there are roughly 800 ferry lines and ferries are a segment where we can expect great interest in hydrogen-electric solutions. Starting next year, the maritime sector will be included in the EU Emissions Trading System, which will increase the demand for net zero, hydrogen-powered solutions.”