JAPAN’S “K” Line has joined a high-powered industry group intent on the commercialisation of ammonia-fuelled ships.

The integrated group is being led by ITOCHU Corporation and also includes Nihon Shipyard, MAN Energy Solutions, Mitsui E&S and NS United Kaiun Kaisha, and their MOU is based on the premise that 200,000 DWT bulk carriers to be built by Nihon Shipyard will be equipped with ammonia-fuelled engines being developed by MAN as a pilot project.

“Ammonia is advancing as a key zero-emission marine fuel solution and if it becomes possible to commonly use ammonia as a marine fuel, this will greatly contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions,” the group says.

“The development and commercialization of ammonia dual-fuelled engines using ammonia as their primary fuel is essential for widespread use of ammonia-fuelled ships. In particular, the ensuring of safety in the handling of toxic ammonia and the confirming of stable operations at sea are important milestones on the road to the social implementation.”

ITOCHU and its partners will proceed with the development of the ammonia-fuelled engines and ships based on necessary operational data collected after the delivery of the ships.  The project was selected by Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO) in October 2021 to be a part of its publicly solicited Green Innovation Fund Project/Development Project for Next-Generation Ships/Development of Ammonia- Fuelled Ship.

“As a logistics company rooted in the shipping industry, the “K” LINE Group will continue to work to reduce its environmental impact to aim for sustainable growth and greater corporate value based on its corporate principle of ‘we help make the lives of people more affluent’,” the company said.