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Collaboration formed to study ammonia safety in maritime sector
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Collaboration formed to study ammonia safety in maritime sector

A new collaboration formed on Monday (19th April) is aiming to understand and guide the safe use of ammonia as fuel on board ships to support the maritime shipping industry’s transition to zero-carbon emissions.

The collaboration sees Lloyd’s Register Maritime Decarbonisation Hub and Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Centre for Zero Carbon Shipping join forces with industry partners involved in the project include A.P. Moller-Maersk, MAN Energy Solutions, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, NYK Line and Total.

To understand the safety precautions needed, the group will develop a mature and detailed understanding of risk and safety concerns, which will be assessed through a quantitative risk assessment methodology in phase one of the project.

This will ultimately lead to the development of best practices for safeguards in design and arrangements when using ammonia as a shipping fuel.

Read more: Ammonia and hydrogen are key to decarbonising maritime transport, says World Bank report

Ammonia is widely regarded as a potential fuel for future decarbonisation prospects providing a long-term solution to the industries transition to net-zero.

Green ammonia can be produced from renewable power by electrolysis of water, making it a zero-carbon fuel, however, there is also extreme toxicity in the fuel meaning that it is also critical to address safety issues to mitigate risks to people, assets and the environment.

The project will also determine the risk of fatality from unintended releases of ammonia, as well as determine the risk contribution of key equipment and spaces dedicated to ammonia storage.

To illustrate the potential for risk mitigation measures, the project partners will assess alternate vessel designs, optimised to be fuelled by Ammonia.

Funded by the participating partners, the project will be managed by the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping and is expected to run throughout 2021.

Claus Winter Graugaard, Head of Onboard Vessel Solutions at Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Centre for Zero Carbon Shipping, said, “This project will provide matured understanding of safety risk enabling industry guidance towards future safeguard design and adequate operational guidelines enabling safe and adequate deployment of ammonia as marine fuel.”

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