HD KSOE develops scrubber technology for ammonia-fueled ships

South Korean shipbuilding major HD Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering (HD KSOE) has unveiled an integrated scrubber technology for ammonia-powered ships.


Ammonia-fueled vessels are known for being eco-friendly because they do not emit any carbon. These vessels are currently being developed by shipbuilders all over the world. However, the key has always been how to safely eliminate the toxicity of ammonia when used as fuel.

Leakage issues have been considered one of the major hurdles when commercializing ammonia as fuel. Acknowledging such concern, HD Korea Shipbuilding and Offshore Engineering revealed its proprietary integrated scrubber technology at the Global Tech Forum in Greece.

According to HD KSOE, the integrated scrubber is an eco-friendly technology that absorbs emitted ammonia on two separate occasions, reducing emissions to nearly zero.

The exhaust outlets have also been designed to be distanced away from where the crew resides to enhance the safety of the vessel.

The South Korean shipbuilder also introduced an AI system for ship management and a remote drone system.

The company emphasized that when applying these systems to ammonia-powered ships, even fine leakages can be detected in real-time, preventing accidents from occurring in advance.

“HD Hyundai has proprietary technologies and the most experience in the world when it comes to building gas carriers. With our abundant experience in green technologies, we plan to be the frontrunner of the future shipbuilding market,” said Seung-yong Park, President & COO of HD Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), a shipbuilding subsidiary of HD Hyundai.

HHI has been working on a new design for LPG carriers. Together with its compatriot Hyundai Mipo Dockyard (HMD), the firm was granted an approval-in-principle (AiP) from classification society ABS for an ammonia-powered LPG carrier design.

The company noted that this joint development will be the first step in the commercialization of ammonia fuel.

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HD Korea Shipbuilding and Offshore Engineering has secured orders for a total of four ammonia-fueled ships.