Jurong Port, Jera and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries forge partnership on ammonia production

MOU Signing
MOU Signing; Source: Jurong Port

Jurong Port, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Asia Pacific (MHI-AP), a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, and JERA Asia, a subsidiary of JERA have teamed up on the production of ammonia.

The trio has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to explore establishing a 100% ammonia direct combustion power plant on Jurong Island, Singapore, which houses the country’s chemical and energy industries.

Under the MoU, a joint study will be conducted, where a 60MW class gas turbine combined cycle plant fueled by 100% ammonia is planned to be set up to produce carbon-neutral electricity, as well as stimulate ammonia demand to be ready for ammonia bunkering in future.

This MoU builds upon an initial agreement between Jurong Port and MHI-AP signed in August 2021 for a pre-feasibility study on ammonia direct combustion technology for green power generation, which was concluded in March 2022.

Jurong Port is already working with partners on exploring the potential of ammonia as the next-generation fuel for shipping. Last year the port joined the Castor Initiative.

The Castor Initiative is a multinational coalition consisting of MISC Berhad, Lloyd’s Register, Samsung Heavy Industries, MAN Energy Solutions, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, and Yara.

In January 2020, the four partners decided to work together on the ammonia-fuelled tanker project by sharing insights and know-how on ship design, engine technology, and bunkering operations.

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In February this year, the Singapore government raised its climate ambition to achieve net-zero CO2 emissions by or around 2050.

This project is in alignment with the overall national decarbonization goals, as it aims to utilize ammonia as a fuel to generate carbon-free electricity, and as the main bunkering fuel in future to decarbonize the maritime sector. The MoU will hence explore the viability and commercialization of ammonia for these purposes.

“We feel this MOU could help pave the way for encouraging the adoption of hydrogen in Singapore through the aggregation of demand across multiple sectors, mainly the power sector and the maritime sector, thereby addressing the chicken-and-egg conundrum of infrastructure versus demand needs for maritime and domestic power generation. This collaboration is certainly consistent with the spirit of reinforcing Singapore’s premier bunkering hub status – for current, transition and future fuels,” said Ooi Boon Hoe, Chief Executive Officer, Jurong Port.

Osamu Ono, Senior Vice President, Chief Regional Officer, Asia Pacific & India, MHI and Managing Director, MHI-AP, said: “Ammonia, which consists of hydrogen and nitrogen, is a highly efficient hydrogen carrier and can be directly combusted as a carbon neutral fuel, thereby contributing to the establishment of a robust hydrogen value chain. At MHI, we believe that ammonia and hydrogen are key fuels that can help countries meet their net zero goals, and this MoU is an exciting opportunity for us to contribute our technology and expertise to decarbonize the maritime sector in Singapore.”

“We, at JERA, believe this MoU offers a unique opportunity to support Singapore’s decarbonization efforts while advancing the ammonia technology development for carbon neutral power generation.  Through initiatives like this, JERA will leverage its experience and capabilities to help countries to reach their net-zero CO2 emissions targets and to build a clean energy supply chain in the region,” said Toshiro Kudama, CEO JERA Asia.

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