GEA plans to support the shipping industry in reducing emissions as a system supplier with in-house solutions.

This was announced by the machinery and plant manufacturer and systems supplier GEA at the international Ship Efficiency conference in Hamburg.

In developing appropriate concepts for the use of ammonia (NH3), GEA relies on its years of experience and expertise in separator technology, as well as refrigeration and heating technology using natural refrigerants such as CO2 and ammonia.

To reduce harmful emissions, more and more ships will be powered by alternatives to heavy fuel oil and diesel in the future.

Experts from DNV, an international classification society and service provider in the fields of technical consulting, engineering services, certification and risk management, predict that in around 30 years at the latest, around a quarter of all ships on the world's oceans will be powered by ammonia.

With the fuel mix of ammonia and a five per cent diesel blend, shipping can be almost completely decarbonised in the long term.

The reason is that ammonia burns without emitting CO2.

In addition, it can be expected that there will be a stable supply of ammonia, since many places are working on production methods for ammonia based on renewable energy.

Another advantage is that ammonia also transports hydrogen bound in the molecule (NH3), which can be converted into electricity on site in fuel cells.

Another argument in favour of ammonia is the amount of experience worldwide in production, storage and logistics.

At ambient pressure, it already becomes liquid at minus 33° Celsius and is, therefore, less costly in terms of energy to handle and keep cool than natural gas, where this temperature is around -160°C.

In the case of hydrogen, the temperature would need to be lower at around -260°C.

It is, therefore, relatively easy and requires little energy to maintain liquid ammonia.

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