Photo: Suiso Frontier; Image by KHI

Suiso Frontier conducts berthing trial at Kobe LH2 Terminal

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Kawasaki Heavy Industries is taking its Kobe LH2 Terminal (Hy touch Kobe), the world’s first liquefied hydrogen receiving terminal, through its paces.

The terminal was completed in January this year. Kawasaki just released footage of hydrogen carrier Suiso Frontier’s docking test at the terminal conducted in January as well.

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The vessel is owned by CO2-free Hydrogen Energy Supply-chain Technology Research Association (HySTRA), formed by Kawasaki, Iwatani Corporation, Shell Japan Limited, and Electric Power Development in 2016, with the aim of promoting hydrogen as fuel source.

The ship started trading in 2021 and is expected to be the first of many more hydrogen carriers Kawasaki wants to build in the future.

Susiso Frontier has been earmarked for technology demonstration testing aimed at the establishment of an international hydrogen energy supply chain in which liquefied hydrogen produced in Australia will be shipped to Japan.

The vessel disposes 8,000 tons in gross tonnage and is designed to transport large quantities of liquefied hydrogen at 1/800 of its original gas-state volume, cooled to –253°C, over long distances by sea. It has a diesel-electric propulsion system and can achieve a speed of 13.0 knots. The ClassNK-classed vessel has the capacity to carry 25 people.

Kobe LH2 Terminal accommodates a 2,500 m3 volume spherical liquefied hydrogen storage tank – the largest of its kind in Japan – including a loading arm system specially designed for transferring liquefied hydrogen between land-based facilities and ships.

Kawasaki said earlier this year that performance tests conducted for the Kobe LH2 Terminal tank confirmed high thermal insulation capability and functional stability.