Lenten Scheepvaart of the Netherlands will go down in history as the owner of the world’s first newbuild hydrogen-powered inland shipping barge.
An important step towards zero-emission transport on Dutch inland waterways, the Hydrogen Electric Cargo Ship Antonie (WEVA) was realised by Concordia Damen.
On 23 October the technical sea trials were held, during which the ship was inspected by Lloyd’s Register and received a provisional certificate to be put into service.
With the hydrogen containers, expected to arrive by the end of this year, not yet installed on board, full attention could be given to testing the advanced diesel-electric propulsion system.
Bart van Driel, project manager at Concordia Damen, said:
‘The fuel cell will soon serve as an energy supplier for the battery packs after the installation of the distribution panel and the placement of the hydrogen containers. The fuel cell itself, which converts hydrogen into electricity, has already been installed on board.
‘Once the distribution panel is delivered, it is just a matter of sizing and manufacturing the final pieces of piping and adjusting the fuel cell installation itself. The diesel generator will then no longer be used, so the Antonie will sail completely emission-free.’
The dry cargo vessel will transport salt for Nobian, European leader in the production of essential chemicals for various industries. For years, Lenten Scheepvaart has been shipping salt from Delfzijl to the Nobian plant in the Botlek.
The company turns this salt into chlor-alkali, among other things, with hydrogen as a residual product. The hydrogen produced in the chlor-alkali production process will soon form the clean fuel for Antonie.