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Design of a Large-Scale Liquid Hydrogen Carrier - LH2 Pioneer


Hydrogen from renewable energy (green hydrogen) or fossil fuel with carbon capture (blue hydrogen) will be a key enabler for decarbonization. Even though the production of hydrogen will be less centralized than fossil fuel, there will still be local imbalance of supply and demand in renewable energy. Such imbalance can be resolved by transportation of liquid hydrogen (LH2) on a large-scale over 50,000m3 per ship over a long distance. Seaborne transportation of liquid hydrogen in bulk imposes several challenges due to its low boiling temperature, low density, low molecular weight, and high flammability in case of leakage. Furthermore, there will be more emphasis on minimizing loss of cargo as the price of hydrogen fuel will be likely to be higher than fossil fuel. Therefore, optimization of the ship design in terms of total cost of ownership is crucial to make the business case viable. In this paper, a system model for transportation of hydrogen on a large scale is presented. The system model is used to understand the interaction of different operational parameters such as production rate of hydrogen, transportation route and vessel speed with the design parameters of the ship such as main dimensions, boil-off rate of cargo, capacity of boil-off gas handling system and choice of machinery system for propulsion. Sensitivity analysis for the important parameters is performed to find the correlation and impact of those parameters on the transportation efficiency, loss of cargo and total cost of transportation. Even though the model is based on lumped parameters that are rather simplified, the study provides a valuable insight into the operational case of the transportation of liquid hydrogen on a large scale.


Academic article


  • Research Council of Norway (RCN) / 320233




  • SINTEF Ocean / Energi og transport
  • SINTEF Energy Research / Gassteknologi



Published in

Proceedings of Global Conference on Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering

View this publication at Cristin