Japanese engineering companies have teamed up to develop hydrogen-powered marine engines for large coastal and ocean-going ships by around 2025. The consortium includes Japanese companies Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), Yanmar Power Technology and Japan Engine, which today signed an agreement to jointly develop hydrogen-fueled engines for large commercial vessels operating on domestic and international routes.
The companies intend to complete the development of a product line that can meet various requirements for use as a primary or auxiliary marine engine or power generator. KHI plans to develop a medium-speed four-stroke engine. Yanmar will work on the development of medium- and high-speed four-stroke engines, while Japan Engine will complete the development of low-speed two-stroke engines.
KHI and Yanmar are already involved in projects to develop small hydrogen ferries for domestic routes. KHI and other Japanese companies, including the shipping company NYK Line, plan to pilot a hydrogen fuel cell passenger ferry in Yokohama Harbor in 2024. Yanmar is partnering with Mol Techno-Trade, a subsidiary of Japanese shipping company Mitsui OSK Line, to develop a small hydrogen-powered ferry.
Japan is awaiting the official launch of the HydroBingo, the country's first 19-ton hydrogen vessel. The hydrogen fueled ferry was developed by the Belgian shipping company CMB and the Japanese shipbuilding company Tsuneishi Facilities & Craft.
Demand for hydrogen as a marine fuel is expected to grow as the international shipping industry seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50% by 2050 from 2008 levels. A number of countries, including Japan, have also tightened their greenhouse gas emission reduction commitments to achieve decarbonization by 2050, prompting Japanese shipbuilders to accelerate the transition to greener, zero-emission vessels and leverage the potential of decarbonization to compete with their Chinese and South Korean competitors. .