A design for a 37,500 cubic meter capacity liquid hydrogen tanker to deliver green hydrogen from the east coast of Scotland to Germany has been unveiled by C-Job Naval Architects and Dutch clean energy producer LH2 Europe.

C-Job said the new class of liquid hydrogen tanker that will carry overcapacity hydrogen produced from renewable energy in or off Scotland has 30 times more cargo capacity than a currently operational vessel.

The vessel will be ready for delivery in 2027 when LH2 Europe aims to have a liquid hydrogen supply chain ready.

LH2 Europe will use the abundant renewable electricity in Scotland to produce green hydrogen and market it at a competitive price with diesel.

The 141-metre long ship with three storage tanks will deliver enough fuel for 400,000 medium-sized hydrogen cars or 20,000 heavy trucks in one voyage.

“We plan to initially deliver 100 tons per day (t/d) of green hydrogen and ramp up production to 300 t/d within three years, depending on demand,” said Peter Wells, chief executive of LH2 Europe.

“Current vessels in operation are not able to deliver hydrogen at the scale we expect will be required to meet the needs of the market,” he added.

C-Job chief commerical officer Job Volwater said liquid hydrogen provides unique challenges for ship design and engineering.

LNG tankers use ballast water to ensure sufficient draft after delivery, but as liquid hydrogen is high in volume but 20 times lighter than LNG, it requires a different solution.

“We have created a trapezium-shaped hull design which creates enough deck space to fit the tanks without the need for ballast,” said Volwater.

The ship, powered by hydrogen fuel cells, will have zero greenhouse gas emissions during operation, C-Job said.

The tanks will have a much lower boil off point than current ship types, it added. The limited remaining boil off will be captured to be used in the fuel cells that provide power to the vessel's propulsion systems, resulting in emissions solely of water.

A first international liquefied hydrogen shipment arrived in Japan from Australia during February on the 1,250-cbm Suiso Frontier (built 2021). Other designs for up to 40,000-cbm carriers and much larger are in the works.