20 MAR 2021
Tanker shipping company Stena Bulk has become the latest to unveil a radical new ship design that the company says challenges conventional thinking around efficiency and carbon-reduction in shipping.
The newly introduced hybrid bulk carrier concept InfinityMAX will be powered by hydrogen and is designed to carry both dry and wet cargoes in self-sufficient modular compartments. Wind turbines and solar panels will used to generate all the electricity needed for internal systems.
One of the core principles of the design is the creation of standardized and modular cargo units that can carry dry bulk, liquid bulk, or liquified gas products (such as methane, hydrogen or ammonia). The units can be dropped off outside of ports and picked up by tugs, avoiding congestion and reducing call times dramatically.
The InfinityMAX concept will also incorporate collapsible wing sails and a shark skin hull to further improve efficiency.
“What we are proposing here is innovative, provocative and would radically reshape the way we think about bulk trade, rationalizing two segments with complimentary expertise into one shipping segment that is ready for the challenges of the future,” said Erik Hånell, President & CEO, Stena Bulk.
As more and more entities target becoming carbon neutral by 2050, Stena Bulk sees a growing demand for the transportation of energy cargoes like hydrogen, methanol, methane, and ammonia. Also, edible oils and chemicals, and carbon dioxide from carbon capture facilities, and other bulk commodities, will also see rising demand.
“The application of advanced technologies – including hydrogen fuel and other efficiency measures – means that this is a vessel concept that proves our core philosophy that innovation is key to commercial success, given the challenges that we all face,” said Hånell. “We will continue to work closely with our innovation partners, leaving no stone unturned to ensure that the right advances happen to make the InfinityMAX concept into a reality.”
According to Stena Bulk, with the right level of matured technologies, an InfinityMAX vessel could come into service between 2030 and 2035.