Africa’s ‘first’ hydrogen-powered ship to be developed in Namibia

Cleanergy has announced it will launch the “first” hydrogen-powered ship in Africa, in collaboration with the Port of Antwerp-Bruges and Namport.

The Multifunctional Port Utility Vessel (MPHUV), powered by dual-fuel hydrogen engines, will allow for operators to integrate different equipment needed for a range of port operations, whilst reducing greenhouse gases. The CMB.TECH – Ohlthaver & list (O&L) Group subsidiary, Cleanergy, will lead the project.

H2 View understands that Namport’s Port of Walvis Bay, in Namibia, was identified as the ideal partner to operate Africa’s first hydrogen vessel. Namport will provide insight into the ship’s specifications during development and refine the concept based on experience.

It was announced a €250m ammonia and hydrogen export facility would also be built at the Port of Antwerp-Bruges, expected to be operational within three to five years.

CMB.TECH previously collaborated with the Port of Antwerp-Bruges on its hydrogen dual-fuel-powered tugboat, which arrived in Antwerp last October (2023), ahead of final commissioning.

Read more: Hydrogen dual-fuel tugboat arrives in Port of Antwerp-Bruges

Hydrotug 1 is capable of using both hydrogen and diesel, equipped with two BeHydro V12 medium speed engines and 450kg of compressed hydrogen storage.

It was announced the hydrogen-powered vessel be developed in Africa during a visit from the King of the Belgians and H.E. Dr Nangolo Mbumba, at Cleanenergy Solution Namibia’s plant site in Walvis Bay.

CMB.TECH’s CEO, Alexander Saverys, said, “The Port of Walvis Bay will be in a unique position in Africa: our project will enable them to offer low-carbon logistics supply chain to their customers. This will pave the way for attracting additional logistics flows and investors.”

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