Orkney is to be the setting for a seven-month project demonstrating technologies to enable maritime decarbonisation.
he £2.2 million HIMET (Hydrogen in an Integrated Maritime Energy Transition) project will explore solutions for decarbonising ferries as well as shore-side activities in ports.
Led by EMEC Hydrogen in Orkney, HIMET will progress a programme of activities centred on the decarbonisation of two key local maritime sectors: ferry services and cruise terminal operations.
To decarbonise ferries, various solutions will be designed and demonstrated including hydrogen storage specifically intended for use on board a vessel, and the supply of on-board auxiliary power using a hydrogen fuel cell. A conventional ferry propulsion engine will also be tested running on pure hydrogen.
To develop resilient shore-side power for the maritime sector a hydrogen engine will be deployed at Hatston to power crew welfare facilities at the cruise terminal, and microgrid solutions will be explored to consider future power requirements for ferry terminals.
At the same time, HIMET will conduct research and stakeholder engagement activities to establish how decarbonised fuels (hydrogen and ammonia) coupled with technology innovations can best inform the broader maritime energy transition and help overcome regulatory barriers.
Once project demonstration activities are complete, HIMET partners will help facilitate uptake across the UK and further afield, demonstrating the maritime working practices of the future.
James Walker, EMEC’s Hydrogen Development Manager, commented on the occassion:
Building on the knowledge and experience from various green hydrogen projects that have instigated the development of a hydrogen economy locally, the HIMET project will showcase emerging and innovative technologies which will help pave the way to decarbonising maritime activities. While the project will focus on addressing challenges in the Orkney context, we believe our findings will be applicable to all island and coastal environments where vessels provide vital lifeline services