Ballard fuel cells placed onboard liquid hydrogen-powered ferry

Two 200 kW fuel cell modules from Ballard Power Systems have been placed aboard the Hydra ferry, which is run by the Norwegian firm Norled.

Proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells have been installed in advance of the ship’s first sea trial, which is planned for December of this year.

The ship, which is slated to be the first hydrogen-powered ferry in the world, was delivered last year. It was built at the Westcon Shipyard under the direction of the Norwegian ship design and engineering firm LMG Marin. The 82.4-meter-long ferry can carry up to 300 people and 80 vehicles.

According to Norled, the DNV-classed ship will be able to travel at a speed of 9 knots thanks to its 2200 kW fuel cells, 2440 kW generators, and Shottel thrusters. A hydrogen storage tank measuring 80 cbm is installed on the boat. It is intended to go in Norway via the triangular path connecting Hjelmeland, Skipavik, and Nesvik.

The industrial gas and energy business Linde has already been chosen by Norled to provide the vessel with liquid hydrogen. The German Leuna Chemical Complex’s new 24MW electrolyzer, which will use PEM technology to manufacture green hydrogen, will supply liquid hydrogen.

According to Norled, the fuel cell-powered boat will lower its yearly carbon emissions by up to 95%.