France’s Louis Dreyfus Armateurs (LDA) has joined the race to get a hydrogen-powered offshore wind farm vessel into service.

It has been developing a liquid hydrogen service operation vessel (SOV) concept, in collaboration with Salt Ship Design.

The teams are consulting key stakeholders such as main equipment suppliers, class and flag authorities and fuel providers as part of the project.

The “industry milestone” is supported by the European Commission, the company said.

Currently in the concept design phase, the SOV will be able to operate 95% of the time with zero carbon emissions.

The idea is that it will release only water during standard operations.

This would have a huge positive impact on offshore wind farm operations-related emissions, by preventing the release of about 4,000 tonnes of CO2 per year, the shipowner claimed.

The vessel will display a best-in-class operability footprint, according to LDA.

The design has space for up to 90 technicians on board, together with 14 days of endurance at sea without requiring additional offshore facilities, or heavy port infrastructure.

“At LDA, our constant ambition is to lead the maritime industry through its energy transition, providing innovative maritime solutions to our customers,” the owner said.

A key enabler of change

“We believe that hydrogen as fuel is one of the key enablers for reducing the impact of [the] shipping industry in the coming years and help [reach] the challenging carbon emission targets for the whole industry.”

LDA already operates two SOVs, a cable layer and a crew transfer vessel, as well as bulkers and ro-ros.

Wilhelmsen Holding and John Fredriksen-backed Edda Wind is also developing a hydrogen SOV concept in Norway, using fuel cell and liquid organic hydrogen carrier technology.

Download the TradeWinds News app
The News app offers you more control over your TradeWinds reading experience than any other platform.