Echandia opens UK hub in Aberdeen

By Dominic Ellis
As Swedish company Echandia sets up its UK hub, battery and electrification developments are making waves in the maritime sector

Swedish company Echandia, which provides zero-emission energy solutions for heavy-duty maritime electrification, has opened a business development hub in Aberdeen to serve the UK market.

The UK hub will be headed by former Caterpillar executive Richard Davidson, a senior maritime and industrial professional who has extensive professional experience in maritime and heavy-duty technical roles, at Berg Propulsion, Caterpillar, and Global Marine Service Group. At Echandia, he will take on the role as Business Development Manager for the UK.

The global market for maritime electrification is entering an intense growth phase, driven by political ambitions to reduce shipping emissions to absolute zero by 2050, and the ambition that zero-emission vessels will enter commercial service by 2025.  

Magnus Eriksson, CEO and founder of Echandia, said it is expanding through existing global customers such as Damen Shipyards, and geographic expansion with satellite offices in key markets. 

Davidson said electrification of large vessels is growing fast. "I see great opportunities with our LTO-based systems, that can handle challenging operational profiles and high c-rates, combined with superior safety characteristics. Everyone in the industry is looking for the right technology-fit and Echandia is in the pole-position in this transformation.”

The Yara Birkeland, billed as the world's first autonomous and fully electric container ship, will soon start commercial operations while beginning a two-year test period, prior to entering full autonomous operation on a route off the coast of Norway. It is fully powered by a Leclanché high-energy lithium-ion battery system.

The emission-free and safe energy supply is provided by a 6.7MWh battery system with integrated liquid cooling to ensure optimum operating temperature.

Anil Srivastava, CEO of Leclanché, said the annual operating cost savings in both fuel and crew, estimated at up to 90%, makes autonomous and battery powered ships viable in international trade. "Combined with new emerging technologies and the integration of alternative green fuels, including clean hydrogen, we will continue opening new possibilities for our customers, the industry and the planet," he said.

International certification agency, DNV, has now awarded Approval in Principle status for the ZeroCoaster ammonia fuelled cargo ship. The ZeroCoaster consortium is led by Vard Engineering Brevik and includes ABB, Trosvik Maritime, SINTEF Ocean and HK Shipping and is sponsored by the Norwegian Government. AFC Energy began work with partners in June to design and engineer a modularised bulk carrier cargo ship propulsion system fuelled with green ammonia (click here).

General Motors recently bought a 25% stake in Pure Watercraft, a Seattle-based company that specialises in creating all-electric boating solutions (click here).

The collaboration between GM and Pure Watercraft advances a shared vision to promote sustainability through an expansion of zero-emissions mobility for future generations and reflects the holistic approach necessary for widespread EV adoption.

This week Deere & Company signed a definitive agreement to acquire majority ownership in Kreisel Electric, a battery technology provider based in Rainbach im Mühlkreis, Austria.


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