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Trafigura Teams with Start-up Amogy to Study Ammonia Cracking 

ammonia cracking study
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Published Sep 20, 2022 6:01 PM by The Maritime Executive

Commodities trading giant Trafigura is stepping up its focus on the potential for hydrogen and the use of ammonia as a transport carrier announcing a new study to research ammonia cracking technology with U.S.-based start-up Amogy, a technology company focus on ammonia power solutions. According to the companies, the findings of this joint research could expedite the adoption of ammonia as a carrier for transporting clean hydrogen around the world.

Launched just two years ago, Amogy aims to enable the decarbonization of the heavy-duty transportation sector having developed a proprietary cracking technology that converts ammonia back into hydrogen. The agreement with Trafigura is the latest in a series of high-profile projects for Amogy which also counts Amazon and Saudi Arabia’s Aramco among its investors. Amogy is focused on scaling up its technology for use in larger applications and pursuing strategic partnerships to support global decarbonization efforts.

“Our partnership with Trafigura opens up tremendous opportunities for the Amogy team to better understand and explore our platform’s potential benefits at scale,” said Seonghoon Woo, Chief Executive and Co-Founder at Amogy. “We look forward to collaborating with Trafigura to identify opportunities for large-scale ammonia cracking to enable global transportation of hydrogen.” 

Amogy and Trafigura will initiate a joint research effort tasked with identifying and assessing scenarios in which ammonia cracking technology can be deployed to support the growing hydrogen market, starting with Europe which is targeting 20 million tonnes of hydrogen consumption by 2030. Using economic models and energy demand forecasts, the two companies will determine the viability and cost-effectiveness of industrial-scale ammonia crackers.

While ammonia is viewed as a promising hydrogen carrier due to its high volumetric hydrogen density, enabling economic, long-distance transport of hydrogen, challenges remain to build the supply chain and lower costs for the end users. Developing scalable ammonia cracking technologies to generate hydrogen Trafigura believes has the potential to help the European Union lower emissions from industry and heavy-duty transport. They noted that ammonia is already traded on a global scale through its use in agriculture and supported by existing transportation and storage infrastructure setting the stage to use it in the transition to green energy sources.

“At Trafigura, we recognize that hydrogen will need to be transported over long distances, from regions rich in renewable power to demand hubs. Ammonia is a cost-competitive carrier of hydrogen which will require cracking at the destination to cater to different end uses,” said Margaux Moore, Head of Energy Transition Research at Trafigura. “We believe ammonia cracking will be a key enabling technology for the large-scale uptake of clean hydrogen. Our work with Amogy will help us understand the economics of this supply chain, to deliver the most competitive low carbon hydrogen to our customers.”