A consortium of shipping stakeholders have announced that they are aiming to develop demonstrators for two-stroke and four-stroke marine engines running on ammonia fuel, reads a Wärtsilä new release.
Ammonia 2-4 project
In a statement posted on its website, Wärtsilä said that it is coordinating the Ammonia 2-4 project, with participation from naval architects C-Job as well as DNV, MSC and the National Research Council (CNR) of Italy. It has secured funding of €10 million from the European Union through the Horizon Europe research funding initiative.
Wärtsilä said that the outcomes of the project will include a lab-based demonstrator for the four-stroke ammonia engine, and a lab-based test engine followed by a vessel retrofit for the two-stroke version by 2025. As well as advancing the engine concepts, the Ammonia 2-4 project will further develop concepts around fuel handling and safety as well as contributing inputs towards a regulatory framework for ammonia.
‘Ammonia is one of main candidates in shipping’s search for future fuels,’ said Sebastiaan Bleuanus, General Manager, Research Coordination & Funding, Wärtsilä Marine Power. ‘Wärtsilä has already proven an engine concept running on blends of up to 70% ammonia so far and will have a concept running on pure ammonia by 2023. This project is a fantastic opportunity to accelerate development of the solutions shipping will need.’
Ammonia as a marine fuel
Niels de Vries, Lead Naval Architect at C-Job Naval Architects, added: ‘Thanks to the project set-up, we’ll be able to show the application of ammonia as a marine fuel for both ships using fuel direct configurations and ships using fuel electric configurations. We’re excited to take this next step and apply our knowledge and experience in Ammonia 2-4 together with our partners.’
Hans Anton Tvete, Programme Director Maritime, Group Research and Development, DNV, emphasised ammonia’s ‘great potential’ as a fuel for ‘deep-sea shipping’ – but pointed that that: ‘Collaborative efforts to put safe, reliable and environmentally friendly engine technology in place are essential for ammonia to enter the fuel mix.’
The announcement of the Ammonia 2-4 project comments on the heels of news that Lloyd’s Register, Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) and MISC via its subsidiary, AET, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the development and construction of two very large crude carriers (VLCCs) which can be operated on green ammonia.
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