Article

Technology status: ammonia production from electrolysis-based hydrogen

Electrolysis-based ammonia production peaked worldwide around 1970, before the economies of scale and cheap gas feedstock led to its decline. With decarbonization and climate-neutral industrial processes now a critical priority, electrolysis-based ammonia production has re-emerged as a long-term solution. From a base of 10,000 tonnes per year worldwide production in 2020, as much as 100 million tonnes per year of electrolysis-based ammonia could be produced by the end of this decade, driven by a dramatic roll-out of renewable energy generation and installed electrolyzer capacity.

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How to build a green shipping corridor

COP27 saw an exciting number of green shipping corridor announcements. But the question remains: how do we actually build them? Earlier this year, the Maersk McKinney Møller Centre for Zero Carbon Shipping launched a Feasibility Phase Blueprint, setting out some key assessment criteria to consider. At the recent annual AEA conference in Phoenix, we took a group of sixty participants through the criteria, asking how and where the ammonia sector should engage.

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New report released on environmental hazards of ammonia spills

Ricardo, Lloyd’s Register and the Environmental Defense Fund have used extensive modeling to assess the environmental impacts of large-scale ammonia spills in a variety of maritime scenarios. The study concludes that large-scale spills will have a high impact on certain environmental settings, and in particular fish species. The report also indicates that ammonia is less likely to spread & persist in the environment compared to a spill of conventional maritime fuel, and in some cases will pose less of a threat to certain species. More considerations need to be worked through, including health risks to a ship’s crew.

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COP27: the Green Shipping Challenge

The US and Norway launched the Green Shipping Challenge in Sharm el-Sheikh this month. The Challenge encompasses more than forty different announcements & initiatives, including ammonia fuel production in Namibia, ammonia-powered cargo shipping in Finland, ammonia-powered pilot vessels in Norway's Green Shipping Programme, and a host of new green corridor projects. A trio of new reports have also provided an assessment of progress to date in green corridor development, and suggested key next steps.

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Production technology updates: from mega-scale to distributed ammonia

Recently, KBR launched its Ammonia 10,000 technology for newbuild ammonia plants, tripling the largest available single train capacity to 10,000 metric tonnes per day. In our latest Technology Insights article, we explore the other pieces of the puzzle required for mega-scale ammonia, as well as some updates from the other end of the spectrum, with three distributed, small-scale ammonia synthesis systems under development in North America.