Illustration courtesy Elliott Bay Design Group

Elliott Bay Design Group Unveils Methanol-Based Power and Charging Barge

Mike Schuler
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December 9, 2022

Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering firm Elliott Bay Design Group has released its design for a methanol-powered harbor power and charging barge to help minimize emissions from ships while berthed or at anchor.

The new design was unveiled last week at the International Workboat Show in New Orleans.

The barge is a type of floating cold ironing platform capable of delivering 7 megawatts (MW) of continuous power generated by methanol for up to two weeks before refueling. It also doubles as an “in-field” DC charging station for
electric harbor tugs and other smaller service vessels.

An independent ultra-low emission and nearly silent 1 megawatt system with 10 megawatt-hours (MWh) of reserve capacity continuously replenishes its reserve to provide fast charging capacity on-demand directly in the operating field of the vessels it serves. EBDG says this eliminates the need to spend time and waste energy running to and from the dock, and no need for costly and intrusive pier side charging infrastructure.

The vessel is equipped with a Wartsila W32M Tier IV methanol generator for cold ironing and features e1 Marine’s M30 hydrogen reformer technology coupled with PowerCell’s PS-185 Fuel Cell system for fast charging.

“This unique combination of commercially available technologies offers exhaust emission reductions of 70%+ compared with conventional diesel at equivalent power,” EBDG said in its announcement. “Zero full cycle emission is also achievable with an optional Wartsila carbon capture system and certified green methanol fuel.”

The barge itself is less than 225′ in length making it suitable for use in the world’s busiest ports and tightest harbors. Meanwhile, double hull protection of the methanol storage tanks, T1(b) Classification by Lloyd’s Register and Marpol 21.1.2 compliance further optimize its safety and environmental benefit.

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