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SHI RECEIVES AiP FOR FUEL CELLS ONBOARD AFRAMAX TANKER

Monday, September 30, 2019 

Samsung Heavy Industries says it has become the first shipbuilder to develop an Aframax crude oil tanker (COT) applying fuel cells to respond to the IMO regulations limiting CO2 emissions, bringing it one step closer to the eco-friendly vessel market.

SHI has acquired Approval in Principle (AiP) from DNV GL for its fuel cell-powered A-max COT. The newly developed fuel cell-powered COTs, in which areoil-based power generators are replaced with solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) using LNG as fuel, offer improved energy efficiency and significantly reduced greenhouse gas emissions. When fuel cells are applied to an A-max COT which traditionally uses 3MW auxiliary engines, GHG emissions decrease by more than 45%.

In cooperation with Bloom Energy of the US, which has commercialised the first SOFCs, Samsung Heavy has developed core manufacturing process including fueling system and power control system for fuel cells. It has thus become the first shipbuilder to achieve AiP for COTs powered by fuel cells, which have higher volumes compared to traditional engines, by optimally deploying them without changing vessel designs.

Meanwhile, as SOFCs can use hydrogen as fuel for fuel cells in addition to LNG, it is anticipated that zero-emission hydrogen vessels can be built based on the approved technology.

"As regulations to reduce GHG emissions take effect step by step, the introduction of fuel cells to vessels is inevitable. This approval and being the first shipbuilder to secure this marine fuel cell technology illustrates that Samsung Heavy is highly likely to lead the market," said SHI VP Kyunghee Kim.

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