The Grimaldi Group, an Italian international logistics group, has taken delivery of the Eco Valencia, the first of 12 hybrid ro-ro ships belonging to its new Grimaldi Green 5th Generation (GG5G) class, ordered from the Jinling shipyard in Nanjing, China. In addition to classifying the ship, RINA (Italian Naval Registry) assigned it the additional ‘Green Plus’ class notation, the top RINA certification in the field of environmental sustainability.
The GG5G class design was conceived by the Grimaldi Group technical and energy saving department in partnership with the Danish naval design studio Knud E Hansen. In addition to a hybrid propulsion system, the vessels have a number of features intended to reduce their environmental impact, including an air lubrication system, which will let the ship also obtain the prestigious ‘AIR-LUB’ notation certified by RINA; a waste heat recovery system; and silicone coating on the hull.
The Louisiana-based Harvey Gulf has ordered four Harvey Energy-class LNG-fueled platform supply vessels (PSVs) to be retrofitted with Wärtsilä ESS (energy storage systems).
The Harvey Power, Harvey Liberty, Harvey Freedom and Harvey America will each be fitted with an ESS comprising a Closed Bus-Tie 1,360kW drive with 746kWh 1100 VDC batteries. The retrofitting project will start in 2021 and will be completed in early 2022.
According to the company, when the upgrade project is completed, all five vessels will be capable of full tri-fuel operation, thus providing Harvey Gulf with a highly flexible, fuel efficient class of PSVs for operations in the Gulf of Mexico.
One of the main stumbling blocks on the path to greater adoption of hydrogen as a zero-emission fuel source is lack of distribution infrastructure. There is also the matter of the energy used to produce hydrogen, which should ideally be renewable. With these issues in mind, Landsvirkjun, the National Power Company of Iceland, and the Port of Rotterdam have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to perform a pre-feasibility study of exporting green hydrogen from Iceland to Rotterdam.
The Port of Rotterdam, Europe’s largest port and a major energy hub, says it has developed an ambitious hydrogen masterplan, with which it aims to become the major import hub for hydrogen supply to the continent.
The Swan Hellenic cruise line has placed an order for a third, hybrid expedition cruise vessel with Helsinki Shipyard Oy.
The constructor says that the ship, like the two vessels already on the yard’s books, represents a new generation of expedition cruise vessels designed with an emphasis on high-latitude cruises. According to the shipyard, design of the vessel has already started and construction will begin in the summer of 2021. It is due to be delivered to Swan Hellenic at the end of 2022.
Larger than its predecessors and designed to sail to all continents, the 125m LOA, 12,000-GRT ship will feature a 4.6MW diesel-electric hybrid propulsion system with selective catalytic reduction, a 3MW battery package and a PC6 ice-strengthened hull.
Hydrogen propulsion is being considered for a retro fit project on supply vessels servicing the Mittelplate drilling and production facilities in the German North Sea.
Currently, the four supply ships in the Mittelplate fleet jointly cover a distance of about 12,500 nautical miles each year to transport supplies to the island, with a current annual consumption of around 275,000 litres of diesel.
“By investigating the conversion of the supply ships to hydrogen-powered fuel cells, we are using technical innovation to protect the Wadden Sea as a World Heritage site and further minimize emissions,” explained Hugo Dijkgraaf, chief technology officer (CTO) at Wintershall Dea, which operates the facilities.
Maritime energy storage specialist Corvus Energy has become a partner in the €9.4m (US$11.1m) European Union (EU) battery research project Hydra, which has been initiated through the Horizon 2020 innovation program to develop the next generation of sustainable, low-cost, energy-dense lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries for electric vehicle (EV) applications.
The project is coordinated by SINTEF, one of Europe’s largest research organizations, and taps 12 partners across Europe whose expertise spans the battery value chain—from materials to end use in electric vehicles (EVs) and marine vessels.
Dr Simon Clark, project coordinator and research scientist from SINTEF, explained, “The cost and lifetime of electric vehicles are largely determined by the battery pack, which can be heavy and expensive.
The FLO-MAR project, co-funded from the Clean Maritime Call, a MarRI-UK initiative supported by the UK’s Department for Transport, has announced it has been making good progress on research to assess the feasibility of using flow batteries in vessels.
The project has selected a harbor ferry designed by Houlder as the most suitable vessel to be studied, chosen because of its short crossings and subsequent low-energy usage, and regular charging opportunities during its daily operation.
Naval Architects and project partner Houlder undertook an initial feasibility design study across a range of vessels in order to better understand their technical suitability to use a flow battery for either propulsion or auxiliary loads; 15 vessels from small river passenger vessels up to coastal tankers were evaluated to give a cross-section of the type of vessels currently operating around the UK coast whose service characteristics could viably integrate the advantages of a flow battery.
Though well developed in European markets, the offshore wind sector is still nascent in the USA. Expansion is, however, starting to accelerate. With this in mind, Edison Chouest Offshore (ECO), an offshore marine transportation provider, has commenced a charter agreement with wind farm operator Ørsted and New England based energy supplier Eversource for the provision of the first-ever US-flagged Jones Act compliant Service Operations Vessel (SOV). (The Jones Act restricts the transportation of cargo between US ports to US-built, owned, registered and crewed vessels.)
ECO says it will engineer, construct and operate the vessel, which will form an integral part of the operation and maintenance of the Revolution Wind, South Fork Wind and Sunrise Wind offshore wind farms in the northeast USA.