Global Energy Ventures Ltd (ASX:GEV) recently concluded ship specification engineering for its proposed 430-tonne pilot ship, which is designed to transport green hydrogen to capitalise on opportunities in the Asia Pacific and Europe.
The energy transition company’s pilot vessel, with the ability to carry 430 tonnes of compressed hydrogen, will be a scaled version of a planned 2,000-tonne cargo ship, which was approved for development in March this year.
Global Energy’s pilot ship is forecast to enter construction in 2023 and first operate during the mid-2020s.
Global Energy has sent off the ship’s specifications, along with a work package, to the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) for review.
This regulatory body has also been engaged to provide an Approval in Principle for the pilot ship during the September quarter of 2021.
Global Energy managing director and CEO Martin Carolan recently said: “GEV continues to advance the development of our hydrogen shipping program with the pilot 430-tonne ship specification and supporting analysis now complete, allowing ABS to commence their review for Approval in Principle.
“Our team of experts, led by inventor John Fitzpatrick and COO of GEV Canada, David Stenning, continue to deliver the approvals program on time and budget.
“GEV is targeting the pilot 430-tonne compressed hydrogen ship to be the first commercial-scale vessel available for the marine transport of hydrogen and support our commercialisation activity, which now includes the recently announced feasibility study for the HyEnergy Project, located in the Gascoyne region of Western Australia.”
Targeting Approval in Principle
The detailed work package GEV has submitted to the ABS includes the ship’s engineering analysis and drawings, stability analysis and tank design calculations.
In tandem, the ABS has been formally engaged to provide an Approval in Principle (AIP), which involves a design assessment that considers international codes and standards to ensure there are no major engineering, regulatory or safety issues.
The ASX-lister is leveraging the AIP program to fast-track approval for the pilot ship by end of the current quarter and to ultimately target full class approvals by late 2022.
In addition, C-FER Technologies has recently completed an independent analysis of the pilot ship’s hydrogen permeability, which supported GEV’s design assumptions and the selection of a stainless-steel inner liner.
C-FER is now supporting the selection of carbon steel and welding techniques in preparation for prototype construction and testing in 2022.
Global Energy has inked an MoU with Province Resources and Total Eren to undertake a feasibility study on the export of green hydrogen from the HyEnergy Project using GEV’s compressed hydrogen marine supply chain.
The project is in Western Australia's Gascoyne Region and covers a flat lying arid landscape with low intensity pastoral land use.
Work at the zero-carbon hydrogen project is forging ahead on multiple fronts, with scoping study data collection and conversations with the state government proceeding as planned.
Looking ahead, heritage, ecological, environmental and geotechnical studies will kick off shortly, while recruitment, onboarding and offtake negotiations are poised to continue.
Transition to green energy
In concert with the data collection, the HyEnergy partners have worked to model the project’s Phase 1 development stage, considering the expected green hydrogen market price and cost of production involved with various sized projects.
HyEnergy’s partners are also working closely with State Government departments as the legislature starts to firm up surrounding green hydrogen’s role as a key future industry in WA.
This includes working closely with the state government to secure Lead Agency Status, which will help facilitate progress across the project’s environmental and other permitting requirements.
At the local government level, the HyEnergy partners have secured the support of the Shire of Carnarvon, entering an MoU to investigate the use of a 12,311-hectare site north of the Carnarvon township as a suitable site for developing infrastructure as part of the HyEnergy Project.
Focus on Asia Pacific's and Europe’s green hydrogen needs
Australia is blessed with plentiful renewable energy sources (wind and solar) and relatively limited local demand given the population.
By contrast, several countries in South-East Asia have pledged to decarbonise their economies but have challenges in achieving targets given the geographies.
Global Energy is looking to address this imbalance by transporting surplus energy in the form of green hydrogen from northern and western Australia to areas of high demand in its novel compressed hydrogen vessels.
Up to 85% of the world’s proposed green hydrogen projects are in Europe, with a large pipeline of gigawatt-scale assets all slated to reach operation by 2030.
In order to meet net-zero emissions targets by 2050, the European Union (EU) plans to establish 40 gigawatts of its own green hydrogen production capacity and secure the option to import another 40 gigawatts from outside the EU.
Edison Investment Research has valued GE at 18 cents per share, which implies an upside of 157% on GEV’s current share price of 7 cents.
The memorandum of understanding (MOU) recently signed between GEV and the HyEnergy Project partners will potentially confirm the validity of GEV’s own scoping study, according to Edison.
The study highlighted the cost advantage of compressed hydrogen shipping, the technical feasibility of GEV’s compressed solution and confirmed the potential production costs of green hydrogen in Western Australia.
If HyEnergy’s own scoping study concludes with a positive outcome, it could prove to be the catalyst that genuinely kick-starts GEV’s compressed hydrogen transportation solution.