South Korea revamps shipbuilding standards to compete in the global market.
In order to be more competitive in the global market, South Korea has updated the standards for the building of hydrogen fuel cell-powered ships. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) adopted compulsory measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from vessels by 30% by 2025, leading global shipbuilders to develop eco-friendly fuel-based vessels.
♦ The southern port city of Ulsan is the centre of South Korea's hydrogen fuel-cell vessel industry, where a demonstration project was launched in 2021 to build a universal platform for hydrogen and electric-powered ships by 2025. The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries revised standards for the construction of fuel cell vessels based on temporary guidelines issued by IMO, and a consortium was launched in Ulsan to expedite the construction of clean energy vessels.
♦ Constructing a fuel cell vessel differs from constructing a big or small ship because the hydrogen storage tank, the primary fuel source, is large. Ammonia is regarded as the next-generation maritime fuel because it can be stored in liquid form and broken down to generate hydrogen via a process known as "cracking". However, there's a disadvantage for fishing and cargo ships as there won't be as much space for cargo if a ship uses ammonia as its primary fuel because it requires an onboard cracking unit to turn ammonia into hydrogen.
♦ POSCO, a South Korean steelmaker, is involved in a project with the Korea Institute of Machinery and Materials (KIMM), Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME), and Korea Gas Safety Corp. (KGS) to create a liquid hydrogen storage tank with high manganese steel. Hyosung Advanced Materials secured a six-year contract from Hanwha Solutions to supply high-strength carbon fibre used to reinforce hydrogen fuel tanks, and Hanwha Solutions took over Cimarron Composites, an American company that developed Neptune, a carbon fibre-reinforced polymer tank capable of transporting 1,200 kg hydrogen gas in a standard 40-foot container.
♦ To create hydrogen fuel cells for ships by 2025, the Hyundai Shipbuilding Group teamed up with AVL, an Austrian engineering firm that offers solutions and methods to influence future mobility trends, in September 2021.
Source: Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide