Amogy aims to have ammonia-powered tugboat on the water this year

Written by Nick Blenkey
Amogy ammonia-powered tug

Amogy's aim is for converted tugboat to take its initial ammonia-powered voyage on an inland waterway in New York State later this year.

Aiming for a world-first, Brooklyn, N.Y., based ammonia-to-power innovator Amogy Inc. is retrofitting a 1957-built tugboat to use its technology, which cracks liquid ammonia to produce hydrogen.

The tugboat, which uses diesel generators and generators, was sourced through Feeney Shipyard in Kingston, N.Y., who will lead retrofitting construction, engine removal and more under supervision of C-Job Naval Architects, the independent ship design company integrating the ammonia system.

The goal is for the converted vessel to take its initial ammonia-powered voyage on an inland waterway in New York State later this year.

It will be outfitted with a 1-megawatt version of the Amogy system, three times larger than that field-tested by Amogy on a semi truck earlier this year.

The Amogy technology feeds liquid ammonia through its cracking modules integrated into a hybrid fuel cell system, which powers the electric motors for zero-carbon shipping.

“We’re incredibly proud of unveiling the first ammonia-powered vessel later this year — especially because of the hope, promise and anticipation that ammonia has built as a zero-emission fuel in the heavy transportation industry — specifically in regards to maritime shipping,” said Seonghoon Woo, CEO of Amogy. “This is the first milestone of many you will see from Amogy in accelerating the accessibility and scalability of clean energy in the global maritime industry. With successful demonstrations of our ammonia-powered drone, tractor and semi-truck under our belts, we look forward to presenting the first ammonia-powered ship in 2023, with a target to fully commercialize in 2024.”

Green ammonia

Yara Clean Ammonia (YCA), one of the world’s largest ammonia producers, and the largest trader and shipper of ammonia around the world, will be providing green ammonia, produced with renewable energy, for the demonstration.

Magnus Ankarstrand, president of YCA, says: “We are excited to be a part of Amogy’s tugboat project and to deliver green ammonia as a fuel for the world’s first vessel powered by ammonia. Yara Clean Ammonia plans to launch the world’s first Ammonia Bunker Network in Scandinavia, which is expected to expand YCA’s capacity to produce and ship ammonia globally.”

Other partners collaborating on the project include Seam, Amogy’s electrical systems integrator, and Stonybrook, N.Y,, based Unique Technical Solutions (UTS) which is handling the electrical and systems work involved in scaling up the powerpack for pre-commercial use.

Amogy has been working with the U.S. Coast Guard and partnering with leading classification society DNV to ensure close alignment with all maritime safety standards.

“DNV has been working with Amogy since December 2021, focusing on the safety aspects of the development of their ammonia system,” says DNV’s senior consultant in maritime environmental technology, Hans-Christian Wintervoll. “A high-level feasibility study was executed in early 2022, and Amogy has shown great momentum in development from that point, through the HAZID workshop in June the same year, to the HAZOP workshop in January this year. DNV is pleased to contribute to their continued success.”

To date, Amogy has raised $70 million in funding from strategic investors such as Amazon, Saudi Aramco, SK Innovation, AP Ventures and DCVC.

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