Fortnightly maritime news for the industry and PortXL community

Time for Offshore Wind to Wake Up to Full Benefits of Digitalisation

Despite the global disruption caused by the COVID pandemic, 2020 was a springboard for global offshore wind development. In Europe, the European Commission’s ‘offshore renewable energy strategy’ targeted a 25-fold expansion of its offshore wind capacity by 2050, committing to significant investment in ports, grid connections and the wider supply chain to effectively support the sector’s growth.

New report addresses hydrogen storage challenges

Large-scale storage of hydrogen remains largely untested but is essential if the technology is to realise its potential to make a significant contribution to achieving net-zero emissions, according to a new report.

Corvus Energy-Toyota maritime hydrogen fuel cell co-op

The two have partnered to develop and produce sustainable, large-scale, and modularised Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) fuel cell systems for the international marine market. The initiative is backed by Equinor, Norled, Wilhelmsen, LMG Marin, NCE Maritime CleanTech, and the University of South-Eastern Norway. The project has also received €5.2m from Innovation Norway.

bp completes entry into offshore wind with strategic partner Equinor

The new partnership will develop up to 4.4 GW through two projects – Empire Wind and Beacon Wind – and together pursue further growth in the US offshore wind market. Completion of the partnership follows the recent success of the Empire Wind 2 and Beacon Wind 1 projects in being selected to provide New York State with 2.5 GW of power. This is the largest US offshore wind award to date.

Windship Technology claims new design is the ‘Tesla’ of the seas

Wind-powered merchant shipping developments are hitting the industry with ever greater momentum. This week Windship Technology, a British company, unveiled its designs of what it claims can become the Tesla of the seas while announcing an investment partnership with class society, DNV GL. The design – developed ands tested in Southampton – features a triple-wing rig as well as a new diesel electric ship drive system that eliminates CO2, NOX, SOX and particulate matter. The futuristic looking ship also incorporates large solar arrays, carbon capture, optimised hull shapes and specialised weather routing software.

Dutch solar island promises new fuelling possibilities

A pair of Dutch companies have set out to build a prototype solar island as a novel way of fuelling ships. SolarDuck and Voyex are creating the solar island on the Waal river in the province of Gelderland. The panels will create hydrogen with testing of the new facility set to start in April and plans afoot to upscale the project to sea locations. “The innovative power lies in combining technologies,” said Koen Burgers, CEO of SolarDuck. “If upscaled, a solar island at sea and on rivers can offer the shipping sector a sustainable alternative.”

Shipping’s Wall Street saga: Rags to riches to rags to occasional riches

Container line ZIM just pulled off something extraordinary in ocean shipping: It priced a U.S. initial public offering (IPO). That doesn’t sound like much of an achievement. The U.S. IPO market is booming; proceeds surged 69% in 2020, according to Renaissance Capital. Yet prior to ZIM (NYSE: ZIM), there hadn’t been a U.S. shipping IPO since Barack Obama was in the Oval Office, when Peter Georgiopoulos-led Gener8 Maritime, a company that no longer exists, went public.