Danish shipping company Norden has partnered up with compatriot Kvasir Technologies, a spinout from the Technical University of Denmark, on a new biofuel project.
“At Norden, we want to drive the shipping industry towards a cleaner future. If we are to truly make a difference, testing fuel alternatives is the right starting point,” says Henrik Røjel, Fuel Efficiency and Decarbonisation Manager at Norden.
Kvasir Technologies has a patented technology to produce fuel from plant material. Namely, it produces liquid biofuel by transforming the part of biomass known as lignin, which is often seen as a waste product.
As explained by Norden, Kvasir’s technology stands out because unlike most other technologies, it is able to convert not only cellulose but also lignin into a liquid biofuel product.
This makes the project easily scalable since lignin is easily accessible and found in large quantities.
“This project will demonstrate the suitability of our biofuel as bunkers and further accelerate the technological development,” says Joachim Bachmann Nielsen, CEO at Kvasir Technologies.
The project will see the duo explore the characteristics of biofuel and prove its suitability for future use.
As part of the 3.5-year cooperation, Norden plans to implement a full-scale test of Kvasir’s fuel on one of its vessels at a later stage.
Norden has already engaged in several biofuel testing projects. In September 2018, Norden became the first ever to conduct a test voyage on a large ocean-going vessel powered by CO2 neutral biofuel.
“In the effort to be a front runner, Norden is assisting in the testing and development of biofuel on owned vessels while working on making biofuel a standard on the company’s long-term chartered vessels,” Røjel added, stressing the initiative is in line with achieving the ambitious goal for 2050 set by the International Maritime Organisation.
To remind, the goal is to reduce the shipping industry’s emissions by at least 50 pct by 2050 compared to 2008.
The biofuel collaboration is part of ShippingLab – a joint industry initiative aimed at developing Danish competences in the fields of digitalization, autonomous shipping and environment-friendly technology.