AqualisBraemar LOC Group (ABL Group) has been awarded an innovative research and development (R&D) project to develop a green hydrogen production barge under the Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC).
The CMDC is funded by the Department for Transport and delivered in partnership with Innovate UK.
ABL Group, including group company Longitude Engineering, will work in a consortium with Green Hydrogen Solutions and Poole Harbour Commissioners on the concept development and feasibility study for a moored barge to generate, store and provide hydrogen to vessels bunkering at the same port. The port will store hydrogen produced via electrolysis using onshore renewables. Poole harbour will be used as a case study for demonstrating the environmental and commercial viability of the concept.
“We are really excited to embark on this innovative project. The maritime industry contributes to three percent of all greenhouse gas emissions and is a hard to abate sector. Technical demonstration of CO2-free powering of ships, when combined with scale, will blaze a trail for the net zero future,” says Dr RV Ahilan, chief energy transition officer at ABL Group.
The work will make a techno-economic analysis of the feasibility of green hydrogen as an alternative fuel to power ships, as well as establishing the commercial viability for such an application and its potential for expansion to other ports.
“This project is aimed at providing rapid infrastructure for hydrogen production at the point of requirement. Providing ready availability of hydrogen will support its adoption as a viable alternative marine fuel and contribute to the reduction of the sectors’ emissions,” says Dean Goves, Longitude Engineering’s managing director for marine vessel design, defence and small craft.
Announced in March 2020, and part of the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan to position the UK at the forefront of green shipbuilding and maritime technology, the CMDC is a £20m investment from government alongside a further c.£10m from industry to reduce emissions from the maritime sector.
The programme is supporting 55 projects across the UK, including projects in Scotland, Northern Ireland and from the South West to the North East of England, including ABL Group’s project
As set out in the Clean Maritime Plan (2019), Government funding has been used to support early stage research relating to clean maritime. The programme will be used to support the research, design and development of zero emission technology and infrastructure solutions for maritime and to accelerate decarbonisation in the sector.
This award follows the appointment of ABL operations in Aberdeen, Scotland this year to a project with Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd. (CMAL) to design and emission-free fuel-cell sea-going passenger and car ferry.