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Home News Construction works commence on Lithuania's first hydrogen-electric ship

Construction works commence on Lithuania’s first hydrogen-electric ship

A new chapter in the history of the Lithuanian shipping industry has begun with the initiation of the construction of the first hydrogen-electric ship at Western Baltija Shipbuilding (WBS).

"I am glad that this modern vessel, which meets the highest environmental protection requirements, is being built in Klaipėda. This is extremely relevant and significant not only for Lithuania but also on a global scale. In Lithuania, we have all the conditions to implement the most advanced maritime transport and infrastructure development projects," stated Marius Skuodis, the Lithuanian Minister of Transport and Communications.

Commissioned by the Klaipėda State Seaport Authority, this vessel is designed for waste management and will symbolize Lithuania's commitment to reducing environmental impact. The project also highlights the collaboration of highly skilled professionals in bringing innovative projects to life.

Following current regulations, all ships arriving at or departing from the Port of Klaipėda must dispose of all ship-generated waste at a port reception facility. The Port Authority is responsible for providing this waste collection service. To enhance the quality of this service, the company has decided to utilize modern, environmentally friendly equipment.

According to a statement, today's symbolic keel-laying ceremony is a crucial part of the shipbuilding process, marking the official start of construction on a modern waste collection tanker. Traditionally, this milestone is marked by affixing a special plate, decorated with three coins, between the structures of the first block of the ship, which has already been built. The plate bears the names of the parties involved: the Klaipėda State Seaport Authority, the Estonian company Baltic Workboats, and Western Baltija Shipbuilding.

Moreover, the primary challenge for the shipbuilders is to design and construct a vessel capable of collecting oily bilge water, sewage, sludge, and other waste. The ship will be equipped with waste collection tanks and an oily bilge water treatment plant that will treat the waste waters and transfer them, along with the sewage, to the city’s onshore wastewater treatment plant. The ship is expected to operate on a 24-hour basis.

The tanker, measuring 42 meters in length and 10 meters in width, will be capable of collecting 400 cubic meters of liquid waste. It will feature two electric motors powered by batteries with a capacity of 2000 kWh and an onboard hydrogen fuel cell system. Depending on the intensity of its operations, the ship will be able to function within the Port of Klaipėda for up to 36 hours on a single charge.

This US$13 million shipbuilding project has been commissioned by the Port Authority and is being constructed by Baltic Workboats in partnership with Western Baltija Shipbuilding. The vessel is expected to begin operations in the waters of the Port of Klaipėda by the end of next year.

“The project is a great milestone for the Baltic Workboats and we are extremely satisfied to be able to deliver such a modern ship to our Baltic neighbors in Klaipeda. It will be the first tanker type vessel ever built with Baltic Workboats participation and in addition to electric propulsion solution in which Baltic Workboats has extensive expertise it will be the first vessel to be fitted with hydrogen power plant in Baltic Workboats portfolio. We would also like to highlight the co-operation between us and Western Shipyard Group in building the vessel – by combining the expertise of the companies we are confident that the vessel will be modern and green addition to port of Klaipeda fleet," commented Jüri Taal, Management Board Member of Baltic Workboats.

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