Norwegian Clean Tech Startup to Launch a Hydrogen Tanker With Shell’s Maritime Division

Tankers and car carriers are not nearly as spectacular for the general public as superyachts or cruise ships, but making them greener is just as important, if not more, than it is for the luxury, glamorous boats. One way of fast-tracking the switch to zero-emissions shipping is retrofitting existing platforms.
Hy-Ekotank will be a pioneering hydrogen fuel cell tanker 6 photos
Photo: TECO 2030
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The Oslo-based TECO 2030 company describes itself as a specialist in innovative engineering and equipment, with the main focus on clean technology. It’s been supporting hydrogen fuel cell-related projects through various partnerships and programs. One of its major projects, the TECO 2030 Innovation Center, was meant to be an innovative fuel cell factory that would double as a research and education hub.

The Norwegian company believes that fuel cells can be considered “the engines of tomorrow,” which is why their applications in the maritime transportation industry should be extended, especially with the International Maritime Organization (IMO) starting to impose harsher restrictions and emission standards on shipping operators.

Last year, TECO 2030 also announced that its fuel cells will power one of the world’s pioneering high-speed hydrogen boats. The Port of Narvik planned to replace one of its existing boats with this innovative vessel. While this fuel cell boat was built from scratch as a zero-emission model, TECO 2030 is also gearing up to launch a tanker that’s converted to a hydrogen-electric propulsion system.

Called Hy-Ekotank, the future vessel will be based on the current fleet operated by Ektank AB. But, through the retrofit installation of a fuel cell system (with either compressed or liquid hydrogen storage), the Hy-Ekotank will be able to reduce up to 100% of the GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions while operating. Plus, it will completely eliminate emissions in ports.

Shell Shipping and Maritime and DNV are also partners in this project. TECO 2030 will supply the fuel cells, while the Ektank AB tankers will be the ones to be retrofitted. The Hy-Ekotank will become one of the first hydrogen-powered vessels of its kind – a necessary development for achieving the goal of cutting GHG emissions by 55% by the end of this decade.
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Editor's note: Gallery showing various Ekotank AB vessels

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About the author: Otilia Drăgan
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Otilia believes that if it’s eco, green, or groundbreaking, people should know about it (especially if it's got wheels or wings). Working in online media for over five years, she's gained a deeper perspective on how people everywhere can inspire each other.
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