The LMG Marin designed Norled operated hydrogen ferry!

Shipowner, operator and cluster partner Norled wants the design of the world’s first hydrogen powered ferry to radiate power and innovation. At the end of February, the operator revealed the first visuals of the historic vessel.

Ship designer LMG Marin has developed the design of the hydrogen ferry for Norled, with contributions from fellow cluster partners Westcon Power & Automation and Prototech. The drawings were shown for the first time to international press at the end of February 2019.

– We want the vessel to become an icon for future hydrogen ferries, just like we did with the world’s first battery electric ferry “Ampere”. It will also be built with universal design principles, making it equally accessible for all people. We hope people like the design, Technical Director, Sigvald Breivik, from Norled states.  

Hydrogen tanks placed topside

One of the most apparent features of the ferry is the topside located hydrogen handling and storage system. In case of a leakage, gas will emit into fresh air and not constitute any risk.

– I have seen several technical arrangements, but we found this to be the safest and most practical solution. At Hjelmeland port there will be a storage site and a filling system for liquid hydrogen. Every third week the vessel will be fuelled with four tonnes of hydrogen, Breivik explains.

– In the beginning we will have to import liquid hydrogen through international sources, but from 2023 we are commited to use locally produced green hydrogen. We are happy for NCE Maritime CleanTech’s initiative to establish a resource group that will work to facilitate a supply chain for liquid green hydrogen, Breivik adds.

Shipyard selected in March

In November 2018 Norled was awarded the contract for developing, building and operating two zero-emission ferries on the Hjelmeland-Nesvik-Skipavik crossing in Norway.

– The next major step for us is to select which shipyard will build the ferries. We are currently considering tenders from several Norwegian and foreign shipyards. The decision will be made in March, Sigvald Breivik says.

Both ferries will be battery-driven and all-electric, while one off them in addition will have hydrogen fuel cells installed onboard. The fuel cells will be able to provide more than 50 percent of the required energy.

– Since we are breaking new grounds when it comes to powering vessels there will be one milestone after the other in the weeks and months to come. We are continuously in contact with the Norwegian Maritime Authority and DNV GL that have established a joint project in order to deal with a whole new set of hazards and challenges that hydrogen brings along. We need to work closely with them to get all certificates and approvals we need to operate a hydrogen powered passenger vessel, Norled’s Technical Director says.