Maersk Supply Service has announced plans to launch an offshore vessel loading company to contribute to the maritime industry’s decarbonization efforts by eliminating empty emissions.
The new venture, called Stillstrom, which means “silent power” in Danish, will operate what is said to be “the world’s first offshore loading station” for ships at an offshore wind farm operated by Ørsted. The installation is scheduled for later this year.
The charging station will be the first in the offshore charging market, allowing idle ships to be powered by clean electricity.
“Offshore charging for inactive vessels is critical to facilitating the decarbonization of the maritime industry, as it allows ship owners to replace fossil fuels with electricity while safely moored to the charging buoy,” Maersk Supply Service said in a press release.
The first full-scale cargo buoy is scheduled to be demonstrated with Ørsted in the third quarter of 2022. The cargo buoy will supply power overnight to one of Ørsted’s service operation vessels (SOVs), supporting Ørsted’s goal of climate-neutral operations by 2025. Ørsted will be responsible for the grid integration of the cargo buoy.
The charging buoy itself will be large enough to charge a battery the size of an SOV, or a hybrid-electric vessel. The same solution can also be scaled and adapted to power larger vessels, allowing vessels of all sizes to turn off their engines when idle. By replacing fossil fuels with green electricity, virtually all emissions and noise pollution are eliminated while the buoy is in use, according to the companies.
Stillstrom will be wholly owned by Maersk Supply Service, part of A.P. Moller-Maersk, and has received financial support from the Danish Maritime Fund and the Energy Technology Development and Demonstration Program (EUDP).
“Stillstrom is part of our commitment to solving the energy challenges of the future,” says Steen S. Karstensen, CEO of Maersk Supply Service. “By investing in this ocean clean technology space at an early stage, we can help lead the maritime industry’s green transition.” Stillstrom has developed within Maersk Supply Service and the time is right to create a company that will focus on providing offshore cargo solutions.”
“Our vision at Stillstrom is to enable maritime decarbonization by providing the infrastructure that will enable ships to be charged with clean energy when idle offshore,” adds Sebastian Klasterer Toft, program manager for Maersk Supply Service’s enterprise program. “The mission is to eliminate 5.5 million tons of CO2 within five years of commercial commissioning, while also eliminating particulates, NOx and SOx.”