Singapore launches first fully electric cargo vessel

Yinson GreenTech (YGT), together with Goal Zero Consortium led by SeaTech Solutions officially launched the Hydromover November 23, marking a critical milestone in the decarbonization of Singapore’s maritime industry.

The lightweight, 18.5m Hydromover is Singapore’s first fully electric cargo vessel. The vessel is designed with swappable battery solutions and can carry up to 25 tons of cargo. It generates zero emissions and can potentially reduce operational costs by up to 50% compared to conventional vessels due to improved energy efficiency and lower maintenance costs.

The vessel was Goal Zero’s submission and one of the proposals under the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and Singapore Maritime Institute (SMI) joint Call-for-Proposals for the electrification of harbor craft to be awarded R&D grants from both the MPA Maritime Innovation and Technology (MINT) Fund and SMI Fund in August 2021. 

The Hydromover is the first project to be ready for commercial trials, which puts it in an advantageous position in the commercialization and innovation space.

The Hydromover will serve as a living lab for YGT and Goal Zero’s R&D partners including the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT), and the Technology Centre for Offshore and Marine, Singapore (TCOMS), which are working on a holistic digital twin of the vessel. 

This will facilitate research on the combined effects of variables such as vessel hydrodynamics, propulsion, motor dynamics and battery performance, allowing ship designers and operators to enhance operational efficiency and safety.

The vessel was designed, engineered, and constructed in Singapore, with all major suppliers being local companies. YGT intends to explore more potential partnerships and knowledge sharing within the industry for ongoing enhancements and upgrades to the vessel. 

This paves the way to elevate Singapore’s expertise for maritime-related green technology and strengthens the city-state’s hub status.

YGT Chief Executive Officer, Eirik Barclay, said: “Being the first to launch a fully electric lighter craft in Singapore marks a transformative moment for YGT. 

“The Hydromover exemplifies what can be achieved through strategic partnerships and alliances with like-minded partners. We are excited to have already received expressions of interest from across the region including Indonesia, where YGT has begun talks with interested parties to deploy the vessel for backwater transportation of goods and electrification of local fishing vessels.

“We are confident of reaping significant advantages from being an early mover in the race to reach net zero emissions by 2050 and we are pleased to already be in talks with supportive financing partners such as UOB and potential equity partners.”

Photo credit: Yinson GreenTech. The Hydromover, Singapore’s first fully electric cargo vessel sets sail.

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