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Singapore’s first fully electric cargo vessel launched

Singapore’s first fully electric cargo vessel – an 18.5-meter harbor craft with swappable batteries that can carry cargo of up to 25 mt – was launched by consortium Goal Zero on Nov. 23, its member Yinson GreenTech (YGT) said in a statement issued on the same day.

The Hydromover generates zero emissions and is expected to reduce operational costs by up to 50% compared with conventional vessels due to “improved energy efficiency” and “lower maintenance costs,” added YGT — a subsidiary of Malaysia’s Yinson Holdings Berhad.

By using batteries that can be swapped out within minutes, the electric harbor craft can minimize operational downtime and improve productivity, and a smaller fleet can do the work of several conventional harbor craft, Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore’s Chief Executive Teo Eng Dih said on LinkedIn, adding that the country is expecting more electric vessels to ply its waters in the coming months.

Five companies — including two Goal Zero consortium partners — have provided letters of intent to charter the electric vessel for operational trials, said YGT.

“We are excited to have already received expressions of interest from across the region including Indonesia, where YGT has begun talks with interested parties to deploy the vessel for backwater transportation of goods and electrification of local fishing vessels,” YGT’s Chief Executive Officer Eirik Barclay said.

Goal Zero — led by Singapore-based SeaTech Solutions — was one of the three consortiums that were awarded funds by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and the Singapore Maritime Institute in August 2021 to develop and pilot fully-electric harbor craft in the country.

“The knowledge and capabilities gained through the development of the electric lighter craft will certainly add to the industry’s understanding of electric harbor craft designs and technology options for cargo transport vessels,” said MPA’s Assistant Chief Executive Kenneth Lim.

Earlier this year, MPA had announced that it will require all new harbor crafts operating in Singapore’s port waters to be fully electric, be capable of using B100 biofuel, or be compatible with net-zero fuels such as hydrogen from 2030.

In May, oil and gas giant Shell started operating its first electric ferry in Singapore to transport workers between mainland and the company’s Pulau Bukom refinery.
Source: Platts

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