Indian shipbuilding company Cochin Shipyard Limited is reportedly planning to build the first indigenous electric vessels based on hydrogen fuel, as a part of the country’s Green Shipping initiative.
Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of Ports, Shipping, and Waterways (MoPSW), has cited that Cochin Shipyard’s sustainable vessel development project will be carried out in collaboration with KPIT Technologies Limited.
The shipbuilding and maintenance facility has also partnered with Indian developers of powertrain, hydrogen fuel cells, and the Indian Register of Shipping to keep pace with the Global Maritime Green Transitions and create rules and regulations for these green vessels.
The Fuel Cell Electric Vessel based on LT-PEM (Low-Temperature Proton Exchange Membrane) technology will most likely cost over $2.3 million, of which, 75% would be funded by the Indian government, Mr. Sonowal added.
The latest electric vessel project is geared towards augmenting the efforts of reaching the ambitious carbon neutral target in India by 2070. It is also expected to comply with the standards set by the IMO (International Maritime Organization) to curb the carbon intensity of international shipping by around 40% by 2030 and further reaching 70% by 2050.
According to Sanjeev Ranjan, MoPSW Secretary, the development of hydrogen-fueled electric vehicles can help India tap the vast opportunities in the Inland and Coastal vessels segment both internationally and nationally.
In addition, the latest project is a part of the country’s transformative efforts on new and innovative green energy technology front and cost-effective, sustainable alternate fuel front, as per the statement made by Cochin Shipyard.
Notably, hydrogen fuel cells are widely deployed in a range of applications, such as material handling, transportation, portable, stationary, and emergency backup power, among others.
The company has further stated that fuel cells that operate on hydrogen fuel are significantly emerging as an environment-friendly, zero-emission, efficient, direct current power source that has already gained traction for truck, heavy-duty bus, and train applications.