Faculté des Sciences appliquées
Faculté des Sciences appliquées

Liquid Ammonia Fuel Storage Alternatives and Minimizing Integration Impact on Ship Design

O'Connor, Declan Rory ULiège
Promotor(s) : Rigo, Philippe ULiège
Academic year : 2022-2023 • Permalink :
Title : Liquid Ammonia Fuel Storage Alternatives and Minimizing Integration Impact on Ship Design
Author : O'Connor, Declan Rory ULiège
Advisor(s) : Rigo, Philippe ULiège
Language : English
Keywords : [en] Ammonia Storage, Fuel Cells,
[en] Lattice Pressure Vessels,
[en] Tank design, green fuel,
Discipline(s) : Engineering, computing & technology > Mechanical engineering
Target public : General public
Institution(s) : Université de Liège, Liège, Belgique
Degree: Master : ingénieur civil mécanicien, à finalité spécialisée en "Advanced Ship Design"
Faculty: Master thesis of the Faculté des Sciences appliquées


[en] Modern developments in both ammonia internal combustion engines and fuel cells have
created the possibility of using ammonia as a carbon-free fuel for propulsion onboard ships.
Coupled with these developments has been the recent funding for projects to develop
ammonia crackers which offer on-site hydrogen production, enabling the use of a fuel with
a high mass energy density without sacrificing large volumes onboard. In this study the
requirements for storing ammonia as a fuel are investigated with application to a small
passenger ferry. Ammonia, known for its toxicity, needs special containment arrangements
and ventilation systems to safely store the substance on manned platforms. These systems
affect the space available for ammonia storage in a fixed boundary system and as a
consequence may require major changes on a ship to maintain operation specifications.
Most scientific research to date has focused on feasibility cases of using ammonia fuel
on large ships primarily where ammonia is assumed available from cargo tanks. Storage
arrangements, tank types and methods of storage on board have yet to be investigated in
detail. In this work, a case study focused on retrofitting a fully electric city ferry to use
ammonia as the energy vector instead of lithium-ion batteries. The work offers insight
into safety requirements that should be considered, and a detailed comparison of key
performance indicators (KPIs) based on tank type and corresponding storage method.
KPIs of greatest importance were the mass of fuel that could be stored, the cost of
implementing the storage method and the additional space available for extra cargo.
Using a multi-criteria analysis seventeen alternatives were analyzed to find that for the
case under study an arrangement of three horizontal cylinders would provide the most
well-suited alternative primarily due to lower cost. For larger ships the use of lattice
pressure vessels is highly recommended as an ammonia fuel tank as these tanks reduce
sloshing, allow pressurized storage and can be built using relatively cost-effective methods.



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  • O'Connor, Declan Rory ULiège Université de Liège > Master ing. civ. méc. (EMSHIP+)


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