SHOW REVIEW: Electric & Hybrid Marine Expo Europe 2022

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The 2022 edition of Electric & Hybrid Marine Expo Europe – Europe’s leading event exclusively dedicated to electric and hybrid marine charging and propulsion systems, technologies and components – featured a host of new product launches and industry innovations, and all under one roof for maximum convenience. 

Held at the Amsterdam RAI in the Netherlands on June 21, 22, 23, the seventh annual Electric & Hybrid Marine Expo was the biggest yet, with over 230 exhibitors from more than 20 countries. Furthermore, a full three-day conference program saw more than 100 expert speakers share their latest insights across 13 individually themed sessions. Presentation highlights included Beluga 24 – the world’s fastest emission-free passenger ferry from Green City Ferries AB’s founder and chairman, Hans Thornell; ELECTRA – making long-range, fast, electric ferries possible with hydrofoils, from Jeremy Osborne, CTO and co-founder of Boundary Layer Technologies; and Going big: electrifying larger vessels, from ABB Marine & Ports’ Palemia Field. 
Highlights from the show floor included a complete drop-in propulsion unit from EPTechnologies, designed to increase yard efficiency and simplify installation for shipyards, with all the necessary propulsion system components pre-wired in 1-3 frames.“We believe in open architecture. You won’t buy over-complicated systems or black boxes that no one except the manufacturer understands,” explained Anne Sorflakne, responsible for marketing at EPTechnologies, during the show. “At EPTechnologies we want the customer to see what’s inside and to be able to understand how the system works.”
An all-electric propulsion unit recently retrofitted into Oranje Nassau, a 20m, 55-passenger sightseeing boat and water taxi operating on Berlin’s urban waterways, was displayed by Torqeedo. The Deep Blue 50i electric drive is powered by three Deep Blue batteries offering 120kWh capacity, which is enough for a full eight-hour day at operating speeds, with the vessel able to recharge from dockside shore power connections, overnight. Torqeedo’s Oliver Glück, VP of marketing, hopes other cities and governments will follow suit and provide similar funding as provided in Berlin: “This project was funded by the German government and this model is very interesting for boat builders and providers of city transportation services, as electrification is essential in making inland waterways cleaner and greener.”

Yaskawa Environmental Energy/The Switch introduced an ultra-fast protection method to make low-voltage DC distribution on vessels safe, efficient and redundant. “We want to make it easier for the marine industry to change from AC because there are big benefits with DC distribution,” explained The Switch’s Teemu Heikkilä, head of product line, converters, during the show. “DC is more efficient, but on top of that, it’s more flexible for integration with batteries, fuel cells and other likely future alternative energy sources.”

Asbjørn Halsebakke, marine technical solutions manager, The Switch, was very pleased with the strong interest the company received at the expo: “We had our first visitor at 10am as soon as the show opened! This event is very compact, with a strong focus – it’s all about what we are doing and our solution is perfect for those people visiting, who can get a lot of information in one place. We meet our customers here, and our customers’ customers. We can show them how to take the steps from AC to DC, even in megawatt cases. Even before 11am on the first day we were discussing cases that are going to happen. This is the perfect place to be.”

Aspin Kemp & Associates (AKA) displayed its latest innovation, the DuXion/AKA split permanent magnet motor, which the company hopes will revolutionize the hybridization of in-service vessels. “AKA has been working on hybrid propulsion retrofits since 2007, but a problem we encounter often is the time and cost to incorporate the electric motor into the shaft line,” explained Tobia Isa, responsible for marketing and communications at AKA. “The new DuXion/AKA split permanent magnet motor hybrid system solves this issue by easily fitting around the existing equipment. It can be split into smaller parts and attached around the existing shaft. It was originally developed for the aerospace industry but we are excited to be bringing it into the marine space and believe it will revolutionize how hybrid retrofits can be done.”

WhisperPower, which exhibited its unique OctoPower DC power backup systems for low-DC (24/48V DC) and high-DC-based e-propulsion systems, was very pleased to be able to do so at a live event: “Online video calling will never replace face-to-face meetings, which are important to understand what our clients need and to explain what we can offer,” said Sacha Loenen, responsible for marketing at WhisperPower. “We enjoyed meeting all our partners and new potential clients at this year’s Electric & Hybrid Marine Expo.”

The show also featured an area for autonomous ship technology: Autonomous Ship Expo, complete with its own conference program, where ship designers, classification societies, fleet owners, naval architects, research organizations and equipment suppliers discussed the developments needed to make autonomous operation a reality, further improving efficiency.

Marine AI was at the show to make visitors aware of its Guardian system, which uses robust AI and decision-making modeling to augment manned-vessel operations and enable fully autonomous voyages. Its Guardian Autonomy product is installed on the Mayflower Autonomous Ship (MAS), which recently made its maiden voyage – a 4,400km trip from Plymouth in the UK to Halifax in Nova Scotia, Canada. “It is the first unmanned vessel to go across the Atlantic, so we’re keen to inform people here about the possibilities,” explained Matthew Ratsey, Marine AI’s managing director.

Vard Electro launched SeaQ Remote, set to debut on 14 new-build marine robotic vessels contracted with shipbuilder Vard (part of the Fincantieri Group). The system provides centralized remote operation of automated ship control systems and deck machinery in support of lean crewing, lower costs, safety and sustainability, helping to facilitate a new generation of larger robotic vessels. “This represents a technological leap that is also the natural next step in our evolution based on long-established expertise in supply and integration of advanced SeaQ automated control systems for such areas as energy management, propulsion, bridge and navigation on more than 300 vessels,” said Vard Electro’s CEO, Andrea Qualizza.

2022 Awards

The show also staged the Electric & Hybrid Marine Awards, coordinated by Electric & Hybrid Marine Technology International magazine and officiated by a panel of international journalists and industry experts. The coveted Supplier of the Year Award was won by Corvus Energy; the Innovation of the Year Award went to Wärtsilä for its dedicated fuel supply system for methanol – MethanolPac; in the hotly contested Propulsion System Manufacturer of the Year category, Kongsberg Maritime came out on top, with the judging panel impressed by the company’s experience providing products within automation, bridge systems, dynamic positioning, electric and digital solutions, and propulsion control for a wide range of applications.

For more information and videos from this year’s event, click here. With the 2022 event a resounding success, dates have now been announced for 2023. Electric & Hybrid Marine Expo Europe 2023 will take place in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, June 20, 21, 22, 2023. 

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With over 20 years experience in editorial management and content creation for multiple, market-leading titles at UKi Media & Events (publisher of Electric & Hybrid Marine Technology International), one of the UK's fastest growing publishing companies, Anthony has written articles and news covering everything from aircraft, airports and cars, to cruise ships, trains, trucks and even tires!

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