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Keppel O&M Tests Engines Built for H2/LNG Blend

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Illustration copyright Keppel O&M

Published Jul 22, 2021 3:24 PM by The Maritime Executive

The technology group Wärtsilä has reached an agreement with Singaporean shipbuilder Keppel O&M to install a set of hydrogen/natural gas-capable engines on a floating testbed platform.

The order was placed in December by Keppel FELS, a shipyard subsidiary of Keppel O&M, and was announced July 22. The company's new "Floating Living Lab" project will be built with two Wärtsilä 34SG engines running on natural gas/LNG blend, with a combined output of about 12 MW.

The FLL project is a floating barge with LNG bunkering facilities for harbor craft and small vessels. It will also house a generating system to power Keppel O&M’s operations, with excess electricity to be exported to the national grid or stored in onboard energy storage systems.

In operation, the Wärtsilä engines will initially run on straight natural gas from the barge's LNG tanks to provide power. They are also capable of operating on gas with up to three percent hydrogen, the company said, and with modifications, they could accept a fuel blend of up to 25 percent hydrogen. The engines are scheduled for delivery in the third quarter of 2021, and the power generation system is expected to be fully operational by the first quarter of 2022.

"Keppel O&M is leveraging its expertise to optimise energy consumption and reduce carbon emissions for marine vessels by exploring different energy mixes such as blending hydrogen into LNG, and using its Floating Living Lab to testbed these solutions," said Tan Leong Peng, Managing Director for New Builds at Keppel O&M. "We are looking for future-proof solutions and engines with overall efficiency and capability for burning hydrogen was an important consideration in the award of this contract."