Through its European subsidiary, Ballard Power Systems is providing technology to a project which will see Valencia’s port in Spain become the first in Europe to incorporate hydrogen energy in its operations.
The H2Ports project aims to facilitate a rapid transition at European ports from fossil fuels to low-carbon, zero emission alternatives based on hydrogen and fuel cells.
Ballard Power Systems Europe A/S today said it had joined the project and will provide the company’s next generation fuel cell module – the FCmove®-HD, which is planned for commercial launch in mid-2019 – to power the reach stacker.
The project involves three pilot initiatives to bridge the gap between prototypes and pre-commercial products:
1. A fuel cell-powered reach stacker for loading, unloading and transporting containers
2. A fuel cell-powered terminal tractor for roll on/roll off shipping operations
3. A mobile hydrogen refuelling station to support this equipment
H2Ports will also carry out feasibility studies on the development of a sustainable hydrogen chain, coordinating all stakeholders including customers, hydrogen producers and suppliers.
Jesper Themsen, President and CEO of Ballard Power Systems Europe, said the project represents one more important step towards broad-based adoption of zero emission fuel cell technology in the marine sector.
“Ballard is pleased to participate in this project, which expands our marine-based activities beyond the announcements we made last year, specifically a Memorandum of Understanding with ABB for the development of megawatt scale systems for ships as well as our membership in a consortium that will design and build HySeas III, the world’s first sea-going hydrogen-powered car and passenger ferry,” he said.
There is a significant worldwide focus on emissions reduction in the marine industry, including ships and ports.
Momentum was reflected in the United Nations International Maritime Organisation (IMO) announcement last year of a strategy to reduce greenhouse gases (GHGs) from ships – including a 50% reduction in GHGs by 2050, compared to 2008 levels, and complete elimination of GHG’s as soon as possible in this century.