A French-built cruise ship is charting a path for greater energy efficiency and lesser carbon footprint with a fuel-cell platform that provides auxiliary power onboard the vessel and while in port.
The MSC World Europa, operated by MSC Cruises, is using liquified natural gas (LNG) as the source for fuel cells converting the energy into lower-carbon electricity while in port. Bloom Energy supplied the 150-kW solid oxide fuel cell platform.
The platform demonstrated 60 percent electrical efficiency while the MSC World Europa was in port. The ship docked in Qater in November and December for the 2022 World Cup.
LNG is methane natural gas chilled to an extreme level to liquify and render it stable for shipping. The group also says Bloom Energy’s Server platform help reduce carbon emissions by 30 percent with no methane slippage. Environmental experts say methane is multiple times more harmful than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas.
More on LNG and Shipping from EnergyTech
The cruise ship was built at Chantiers de l’Atlantique (CdA). It is located in Saint-Nazaire, France, and considered one of the largest shipyards in the world.
“We are firmly committed to leading the shipbuilding industry in its transition to a more environmentally friendly future,” said Laurent Castaing, general manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique. “The in-port performance of Bloom Energy’s fuel cells shows that we have charted the right course to making this a reality. We look forward to having Bloom Energy on board for the future.”
The Bloom Energy fuel cell system can operate on LNG, blended hydrogen, ammonia and pure H2. The system also achieved full power output during the vessel’s maiden voyage between Saint-Nazaire and Qatar while in the Mediterranean Sea.
World Europa is MSC’s first LNG-propelled cruise ship. The 11-deck design includes a Y-shaped open aft, 341-foot-long promenade, 19 stateroom categories and 13 dining venues.
The ship’s sustainability profile includes shore-to-ship electrification, advanced HVAC and selective catalytic reduction to cut nitric oxide emissions, according to reports.