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HYON receives PILOT-E funding for two zero-emissions maritime projects using fuel cells and green H2

HYON AS has, together with partners, been awarded grants under Norway’s PILOT-E scheme for the development and realization of two maritime projects; a high-speed ferry and a short-sea freighter. The ambitions of both projects are to realize zero-emission propulsion via fuel cells using cost-efficient hydrogen produced from electrolysis based on renewable energy.

HYON is a joint venture established in 2017, owned wholly by Nel ASA, Hexagon Composites ASA and PowerCell Sweden AB. HYON provides customers with one point of contact for provision of products and services; from production of hydrogen, distribution and storage, dispensing systems and fuel cells. HYON’s main focus is the maritime industry, where HYON offers system integration of all on- board hydrogen systems from bunkering flange, via tank systems and distribution systems to use of hydrogen in module-based fuel cells solutions.

The projects are:

  • Project ZEFF – Zero Emission Fast Ferry. The vessel will utilize foils that lift the vessel out of the water and will have cruise speed between 25 and 45 knots. The craft will operate without CO2, NOx, SOx and particulate matter emissions. Propulsion power will be produced by hydrogen fuel cells and batteries. The vessel will have approximately 45% lower energy consumption than current vessels per passenger-km, and can be made with varying size and capacity, from 100 to 300 passengers.

  • Project SeaShuttle – Zero emission coastal freighter with automated cargo handling. The project goal is to develop and realize profitable emission-free container transport for short-sea market based on hydrogen fuel cells. The ship concept will be moving transport of cargo from road to sea and will include autonomous cargo handling in achieving cost-effectiveness.

In the development contracts, HYON will use PowerCell as supplier of fuel cells, Hexagon as supplier of hydrogen storage tanks and Nel as supplier of the on-shore hydrogen production and fuelling solutions. Earlier this year, HYON was the first company to receive approval-in-principle from DNV GL of their module-based fuel cell solutions.

The PILOT-E scheme provides funding for Norwegian trade and industry and has been launched as a collaboration between the Research Council, Innovation Norway and Enova. Final agreements for the grant will be signed early 2019, upon which the project will commence immediately thereafter.

The objective of PILOT-E is to develop and utilize novel products and services in the field of environment-friendly energy technology as a means of reducing emissions both in Norway and internationally. The PILOT-E scheme seeks to accelerate the pace of development through greater predictability of funding, closer follow-up and better coordination between funding agencies in the research and innovation system.

Zero-emissions maritime vessels are expected to be in high demand—both within maritime segments where first-generation solutions, such as zero-emissions ferries, are already available, and in new segments, such as fast-ferries—and within the offshore industry and fisheries/aquaculture. With regard to ferries, about 70 ferry routes involving 100 ferries will be put out to tender and set into operation in the near future. Many of these tenders will specify requirements regarding reduced greenhouse gas emissions. This means that there is a large, growing market for the solutions that receive support under the PILOT-E scheme.



Excellent project to introduce the use clean fuel cells for ships and ferries. This could be followed by large pleasure boats and ships?

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