The briefing on battery, hybrid and fuel cell technology

The news, views and numbers you need to know this month

News in numbers

2.7 MWh

The biggest battery installation on a ship to date, installed on Scandlines’ Princsesse Benedicte, the ferry operating between Shaelland in Denmark and Puttgarden in Germany


The cost level for energy-optimised maritime battery systems is expected to reach the $500/kWh level within a few years

10 min.

The time it takes for the first large-size all-electric battery-powered car ferry, Norled’s Ampere, to charge between each trip


The year that the first electric powered boat set sail in St. Petersburg, which was able to carry 14 passengers at a speed of three knots

$5 million

The Port of Francisco has proposed a hydrogen fuelling station for ships, which is estimated to cost around $5m and is expected to be the first of its kind

4,000 hp

ABB and Ballard’s large scale fuel cell solution for hydrogen-powered ships aims to generate 3MW, or 4,000 horsepower, in electricity

In quotes

Remi Eriksen, CEO and president of DNV GL, on the competitiveness of battery propulsion:

Batteries have dropped in price by some 60-70% in the past four years and my guess is that this trend will continue – with as much as a 50% reduction in price compared to the current level. This means that battery propulsion is a good and often viable solution to reduce CO2, SOx, NOx and particulate emissions.

Øystein Alnes, principal maritime engineer for DNV GL, on battery safety concerns:

The safety element is critical. Batteries are a potentially risky component, and they must be taken seriously. DNV GL was the first to issue class rules for marine lithium ion batteries, and FellowSHIP [project] defined our knowledge of battery technology.

Kolbjørn Berge, senior surveyor for the Norwegian Maritime Authority, on hydrogen’s potential as a marine fuel:

It is our opinion that the use of hydrogen as marine fuel is fully achievable, provided that the process is properly organised. The legislation does not hinder the development; on the contrary, it allows for new and innovative thinking when it comes to design and development of technology.

Electrification – maybe that’s a black swan. Maybe by 2050 we will have found a way to include decarbonized electricity within the maritime sector. That would be transformational.

Top stories

Rolls-Royce is launching a lithium-ion based energy storage system for ships. The SAVe Energy solution is a highly efficient, liquid-cooled battery with a modular design that enables the product to scale according to energy and power requirements. The system complies with international legislations for low and zero emission propulsion systems.

Source: Electrek

Brunvoll has integrated a plug-in hybrid system to the passenger ship the Brim Explorer, which has been designed for sightseeing and whale watching. The system comprises an electric and battery package, including a control system for propulsion and manoeuvring. During sightseeing, the vessel will run in full battery/electric mode to ensure a silent and environmentally friendly sailing.

Source: Passenger Ship Technology

Construction of the world’s first autonomous and electric commercial ship is about to begin, after shipbuilder Vard won a $30m contract to build the containership the Yara Birkeland for fertiliser group Yara. Vard will build the autonomous zero-emissions ship at its shipyard in Romania and Brevik, Norway, for delivery in 2020.

Source: Marine Electronics & Communications

ABB and Ballard Power Systems have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on developing the next-generation fuel cell power system for sustainable marine e-mobility. The companies will leverage the existing kilowatt-scale fuel cell technologies and optimise them to create a pioneering megawatt-scale solution, which is suitable for powering larger vessels.

Source: Port Technology

Kongsberg Maritime has been contracted by Nanjing Jinling Shipyard in China to deliver power and hybrid systems to nine RoRo vessels, ordered by Italy’s Grimaldi Group. The new vessels are due for delivery in 2020 and will measure 238m long, with a beam of 34m and gross tonnage of 64,000t. The contract scope includes the supply and integration of large battery systems, shaft generators, frequency converters and energy management systems.

Source: ShipInsight