VINSSEN launches hydrogen fuel cell vessel demonstration project

VINSSEN Co., Ltd., the leading maritime fuel cell technology provider that enables the use of hydrogen (and alternative fuels like ammonia and methanol), is set to launch a demonstration project under the regulatory exemption for “hydrogen fuel cell propulsion ship fueling and operation,” as approved by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) in Korea.

Despite growing global momentum in maritime decarbonization, Korean legislation lacks standards for hydrogen fuel cell vessels. At present, hydrogen fueling stations are also limited to automobiles, highlighting a need to establish operational standards for hydrogen vessels.

Following confirmation that its design qualifies under MOTIE’s regulatory exemption, VINSSEN will build a 16m leisure boat powered by a 200kW Fuel Cell System and 125kW Battery Hybrid System with the support of municipals authorities from Jeolla Provance in Korea (where VINSSEN is headquartered). VINSSEN will also develop and operate mobile hydrogen fueling stations at the Daebul Industrial Complex’s mooring station. These will be constructed as integrated packages with vessel-specific monitoring technologies.

VINSSEN will be supported by Jeonnam Technopark, Korea Institute of Industrial Technology (KITECH), and Korea Marine Equipment Research Institute (KOMERI), which will evaluate vessel stability and hydrogen fuel cell system performance.

“The shipbuilding industry is a sector that should prioritize the development and application of eco-friendly technologies due to heavy dependence on fuel oil and diesel, which results in high carbon emissions,” Lee Chil-han said. “We hope that the demonstration project facilitates the establishment of rules and regulations that will expedite Korea’s development of hydrogen vessel technology”

In 2019, the Ministry of SMEs & Startups and Ulsan Metropolitan City designated the “Hydrogen Green Mobility Special Zone” to commercialize hydrogen fuel cell vessels, with VINSSEN successfully demonstrating a hydrogen fuel cell propulsion project from January 2020 to March 2022.

In addition to its focus on fuel cell technology, VINSSEN is also positioned to support maritime electrification with battery solutions. When paired with batteries, fuel cells can benefit from increased efficiency and longer operational ranges.

VINSSEN has already established a strong technical track record, marked by a series of achievements, including being the first company in Korea to receive AIP certification for a maritime hydrogen fuel cell electric system. Building on this success, VINSSEN is set to spearhead further progress in maritime fuel cell technology and maritime electrification, including expected Type Approval in April 2023 for a maritime lithium-ion battery System from Korean Register (KR) and Korea Marine Surveyor & Sworn Measurers’ Corporation (KOMSA).

Engr. Haseeb Ullah

Haseeb covers the global energy market for both conventional and modern energy resources. His expertise is on the global energy supply chain from generation to distribution and end-users. He has a Master degree in Engineering Management and a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering.
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