IHI: converting LNG infrastructure
IHI will explore the conversion of LNG import terminals near existing gas-fired power plants in Japan into ammonia import facilities. IHI has constructed around a third of Japan’s 37 currently operational LNG import terminals, and around half the LNG storage tanks in the country (including the largest, a 250 kL, underground tank at the Ohgishima LNG terminal near Tokyo). The bulk of these terminals service adjacent gas-fired power plants, which generate a third of Japan’s electricity needs.
The news comes a week after IHI and GE announced they would be developing a technology roadmap for the conversion of existing, utility-scale gas turbine models to run on 100% ammonia fuel by 2030. GE turbines represent about half the operational units in Japan’s gas-fired fleet.
Mitsubishi & INPEX: bunkering vessel
Mitsubishi Shipbuilding and INPEX have completed a conceptual study for an ammonia bunkering vessel. The design is “highly flexible”, and will be able to serve the huge variety of ammonia-powered vessels currently under development in Japan. The pair will next focus on commercialisation of the design.
In February last year, Mitsubishi and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines completed a joint study into ammonia bunkering – this one for the design of a floating storage & regasification barge (also known as FSRUs). The commercial operation of both ship-to-ship bunker vessels and FSRUs in Japan would open up a wide range of options for ammonia imports to the country, including the direct supply of ammonia fuel to power plants from vessels moored offshore.