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Facing the Challenges of Future Marine Power

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18.06.2018

Facing the Challenges of Future Marine Power

John Haynes - AFNI FRINA Shock Mitigation

In April 2018 we organised the NEXT GENERATION Marine Power & Propulsion conference in Southampton UK. We had a superb group onboard that debated the technical and financial challenges of marine hybridisation.

I was then invited to Westminster, home of the UK government, to present on 'Hybrid Power Utilisation in Offshore Marine Vessels' to the All Party Parliamentary Maritime and Ports Group. 

As the UK and EU marine industries consider the implications of Brexit, requirements are likely to also change for professional and commercial operators. Will new regulations drive the demand for clean energy in all marine sectors - and will governments help to fund this new technology with subsidies or tax incentives?

If you want to know more about what we have learned about the future of 'hybrid' marine power from working with literally hundreds of stakeholders (including legislators - industry - investors - end user organisations) I will be in Amsterdam NL from 27 to 29 June at the Electric & Hybrid Marine Expo and chairing day 3 of the conference.

I will then be in Southampton UK from 2 to 5 July. Presenting at Speed@Seawork on ‘Balancing the Need for Speed with Reliability and Durability’. Then presenting at the Seawork conference on ‘The Hour Of Power - Hybrid Technology for Workboats, Patrol Vessels and Superyacht Tenders’.

How Can Marine Sectors Finance Hybrid Power

Ports and the offshore industry are now recognising the potential of utilising hybrid power linked to innovative propulsion systems. However, the cost of adopting hybrid technology on retrofit projects and new vessels requires a viable business case to justify higher capital expenditure (CAPEX). Operators cannot afford to go ‘green’ for no reason, there simply is not the margin to add on another layer of costs.

Maritime sectors need a viable business case or they need a compliance case. Which raises the burning question - how can the ports and offshore sector finance hybrid marine power?

Other transport sectors around the world are successfully utilising hybrid systems. Automotive manufacturers including Tesla and BMW are re-defining energy possibilities for land transport. Standardisation is helping to reduce costs and the technology is transitioning from high performance cars to city busses and the future of aviation.

Technology Readiness Level (TRL) is rated 1 to 9. Component parts of maritime hybrid powertrains typically achieve TRL8. By definition this is, ‘actual system completed and qualified through test and demonstration’. But maritime needs to move up to TRL9, ‘actual system proven through successful mission operations’...

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