ABB, SINTEF Test Fuel Cells of Hydrogen Hybrid Ferry
Swiss-Swedish multinational corporation ABB and European independent research organisations SINTEF Ocean laboratory in Trondheim test fuel cells for the world’s first conversion of a hydrogen hybrid ferry.
The tests aim to provide answers needed for Norwegian shipyard Fiskerstrand to convert an existing ferry to run on a combination of batteries and hydrogen fuel cells.
The tests will also provide answers into the introduction of hydrogen fuel cells for future reviews of the rules covering shipboard use of hydrogen.
In addition, the tests will simulate the conditions the ferry is expected to face on a high frequency 10km route to make sure that the propulsion systems including fuel cells are robust enough for repetitive, short-burst service duties.
"We expect to gain real insight into what we need to deliver a ferry with hydrogen-based fuel cell operation to our HYBRIDskip project," says Kåre Nerem, project manager at Fiskerstrand.
"ABB's knowledge of system integration combined with SINTEF Ocean's long experience with maritime propulsion systems and SINTEF Industry's expertise in fuel cell technology, becomes the key to the solution here. These are neolithic work and together we will ensure that the solution is optimal for the particular route and ferry," Nerem added.
Hydrogen fuel cells are considered a promising option for reducing ships' greenhouse gas emissions. Combined with more established shipboard battery technology, they can improve energy density in zero-emission marine operations while also improving vessel endurance.