New Japanese Fuel Cell Passes Tests in Marine Setting

SeaDiscovery.com
Thursday, November 14, 2013

A closed-cycle fuel cell system jointly developed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) and the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) has become the world's first system of its kind to perform successfully in a test to supply power to observation equipment in actual use at sea.

With this success, this compact fuel cell system, which has cleared earlier technical hurdles through the adoption of a new gas circulation system and other innovations, is expected to supersede conventional storage batteries and fill a major role as an underwater power supply for operating seabed-installed observation instruments and marine research vessels over long periods of time.

The unit that passed the ocean field test is a solid-polymer type high-efficiency multi-less (HEML signifies Blower-less, humidifier-less and leak-less) fuel cell system. In testing, the fuel cell system equipped on JAMSTEC's "Deep Tow" marine research towing unit was submerged to a depth of 180 meters (m) to supply power simultaneously to two units of observation equipment. The test operation confirmed that power was supplied stably and that the equipment receiving power from the system continued to perform their observation duties without interruption.


Presently many different observation platforms are in use at sea, including deep-sea locations, whose equipment has become increasingly sophisticated and observation durations have lengthened, power requirements have grown to a level beyond the capacity of storage batteries having limited output capabilities. To supply the power needed, closed-cycle fuel cell systems have for some time been under development; but favorable results had not been obtained owing to issues such as the inability to achieve compact system size because of the need for gas circulation equipment and humidifiers to add dampness to the gas, compounded by the inability to prevent minuscule leaks of hydrogen gas.


The HEML fuel cell system newly developed by MHI and JAMSTEC has, through the adoption of a new structure in the gas circulation system, etc., resolved these various problems that until now impeded the creation of a viable system. Specifically, the structure uses valve operation to switch between the upstream and downstream sides of the fuel cell stack at fixed intervals – a configuration that has eliminated the need for a blower and humidifier, which together made large system size inevitable.

MHI and JAMSTEC's new system will proceed further toward the achievement of a fully practical closed-cycle fuel cell system offering output in the several kilowatt (kW) class.


Maritime Reporter March 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Warships Shell Houthis Outside Yemeni City of Aden

Warships shelled a column of Houthi fighters and troops loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh as they tried to advance on the southern port city of Aden on Monday,

Keppel FELS Delivers 11th Jackup to Mexico

Keppel FELS Limited (Keppel FELS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd (Keppel O&M), has delivered a KFELS B Class jackup rig to Mexican national oil company,

IMCA DP Proposal to be Basis for Updating IMO Guidelines

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has agreed to use the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) proposals as the basis for the review of

Technology

IMCA DP Proposal to be Basis for Updating IMO Guidelines

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) has agreed to use the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) proposals as the basis for the review of

Ship Fix: Radio Holland Wins Ahrenkiel Steamship Deal

Ahrenkiel Steamship GmbH & Co. KG and Radio Holland Germany GmbH, part of Imtech Marine, have agreed a long-term maintenance agreement for the entire Ahrenkiel Steamship fleet,

Drydocks World, Maritime World Win Excellence Awards

Drydocks World and Maritime World have won the Excellence Award given by the International Maritime Club at the Golden Bells Awards 2015 - Middle East. Drydocks

Subsea Defense

Powerful Submarines Join Israel’s Navy

The Israel Navy’s fourth submarine, the ISS Tanin (Crocodile), is expected to become fully operational in a few weeks and participate in naval operations.   The

Germany Fights for Indian Submarine Contract

German giant ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS), the parent company of leading submarine builder HDW, will offer India its HDW Class 214 vessel, with an eye to

Vietnam's Submarines to Counter China?

Vietnam's new submarines could alter the balance in the South China Sea quite dramatically, say maritime security analysts.   Vietnam and China have long contested

Ocean Observation

American Boat Leads in Volvo Ocean Race Leg 5

As the six-strong fleet Volvo Ocean Race continued to endure a helter-skelter ride toward Cape Horn in the Southern Ocean, the American boat Team Alvimedica took the lead, reports AP.

US Navy to Roll out Underwater Spy Satellites

The robotic series that remade crusade in skies will shortly extend to a low sea, with underwater view “satellites,” drone-launching pods on a sea building and unmanned ships sport submarines,

China Unveils Action Plan on Maritime Silk Road

China has unveiled the principles, framework, and cooperation priorities and mechanisms in its Maritime Silk Road initiative in a bid to enhance regional connectivity

Underwater Engineering

Keppel FELS Delivers 11th Jackup to Mexico

Keppel FELS Limited (Keppel FELS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd (Keppel O&M), has delivered a KFELS B Class jackup rig to Mexican national oil company,

US Navy to Roll out Underwater Spy Satellites

The robotic series that remade crusade in skies will shortly extend to a low sea, with underwater view “satellites,” drone-launching pods on a sea building and unmanned ships sport submarines,

Statoil: Polarled Pipe-Laying Kicks Off

On 26 March, the Solitaire pipe-laying vessel started on the first stage of the Polarled installation project. The 482-kilometre long pipeline will transport gas

 
 
Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1982 sec (5 req/sec)