The future of ships’ energy supply in a partnership between Siemens, VSY and Lloyd’s Register

Milano, Italy. Recently announced is the collaboration between Siemens and PowerCell Sweden AB, Swedish manufacturer of hydrogen fuel cells, for the development and implementation of these cells in the integrated energy and propulsion system of Siemens SISHIP BlueDrive, with the aim of a more sustainable and efficient energy supply of ships.

Even more recent is the development of an application project with this integrated solution – the first in Italy in the luxury yacht sector – which is the result of a collaboration between Siemens, VSY, a manufacturer of luxury mega yachts over 60 meters in length, and Lloyd‘s Register, one of the leading international providers of certification and categorization services for the shipbuilding industry. The aim of the project is to create a 200kW power system on a special version of the brand new VSY 65-metre Waterecho, through the integration of hydrogen fuel cells and lithium-ion batteries to power the electric stern motor (used for maneuvering or as an auxiliary propeller) and hotel services for the night, without the use of diesel generators, resulting in a greener navigation.

Designed by Espen Øino, one of the most talented and recognized pens in the world of pleasure boating, the Waterecho by VSY is a perfect combination of comfort and sustainability. A combination based on the pursuit of excellence and high performance as well as of the reduction of fuel consumption and of greater efficiency: characteristics of the strategy of VSY but also of Siemens, always committed to the development of environmentally friendly and advantageous solutions for the marine and shipbuilding sector.

The integrated energy and propulsion system, Siemens SISHIP BlueDrive, specifically designed for the shipbuilding industry, and PowerCell‘s hydrogen fuel cells can be integrated into on-board propulsion and power generation systems with lithium-ion batteries (such as Siemens BlueVault) or on electric motors, thus creating an efficient and sustainable power supply and storage system.

The SISHIP BlueDrive system confirms Siemens‘ focus on environmental sustainability while maintaining optimal and effective boat management. SISHIP BlueDrive is based on a fully integrated power distribution in which the main control panel and all drives are contained in a single compact unit. Several subassemblies can then be easily connected to the energy supply of the vessels. With the increasing use of battery-powered drive systems, especially in ferries, the goal is now to extend the concept of sustainable energy supply through hydrogen fuel cells, which are characterized by high efficiency and by a consequent fuel-efficient navigation.

The collaboration between Siemens, VSY and Lloyd‘s Register sees, on the one hand, VSY engaged in establishing the performance targets of the onboard power generation system in relation to the entire project of the vessel, on the other hand, sees Siemens provide its know-how and technological solutions and, finally, Lloyd‘s Register carry out a “Approval in Principle” for the purposes of vessel categorization, indicating the technical requirements for the safety in the use of hydrogen fuel cells, gas storage and installation on board of innovative yachts.