Azane Fuel Solutions, a joint venture between Amon Maritime and Econnect Energy, plans to build bunkering facilities for ammonia in Norway, according to a press release.
The new partnership will "fill an existing gap in the ammonia fuel value chain by developing ammonia ship bunkering infrastructure technology, products and services," the company states.
The aim is to develop flexible bunkering terminals in order to make it easier to implement ammonia fuel in shipping. To do this, Azane will develop two different infrastructure options. One shore-based solution and one floating option.
The shore option is "ideal for industrial ports and supply bases, allowing direct ship bunkering alongside the quay, or transfer to a bunkering barge. Larger versions of the system can also function as bunkering storage terminals, serving a fleet of bunkering vessels," writes the company.
The floating option has greater flexibility and mobility and can be helpful in the early years of shifting towards using ammonia, because the floating infrastructure can be moved by tug boats to key ports where the vessel will need to bunker often.
André Risholm, CEO at Amon Maritime, explains to ShippingWatch that the infrastructure will not be moved often, but that it can remain at a port on a shipping line's route that will be a regular port of call. This key route may change after a couple of years, and if and when that happens, the floating installation can be moved to a new location.
According to Norwegian newspaper, Finansavisen, the initial focus will be to build one or two facilities along the Norwegian coastline before embarking on an expansion.
Azane Fuel Solutions "will offer its products and services globally and see the Northern European market as a likely early adopter of ammonia fuel," the company states. Even though Azane will start in Northern Europe, the company estimates that the global market is still strong. The company describes the market potential as "strong" once the international deep-sea segment adopts the fuel.
Amon Maritime is also a partner in the newly established Viridis Bulk Carriers, who plans to build a whole series of ships using ammonia as a fuel. Viridis aims to have the first vessel in commission by 2024.