Working to understand the effect of new fuel types
The Sustainable Marine and Road Transport - Hydrogen in Iceland (Smart-H2) project is a research project that Elding took part in from 2007 to 2010. The main focus was to expand the understanding of how new fuel types fit the Icelandic context, i.e. local availability, production costs, performance of vehicles, necessary infrastructure, public acceptance and other factors.
The project was run by Iceland New Energy and VistOrka in cooperation with Reykjavík University and supported by Hertz in Iceland, Reykjavík Energy and The National Power Company Landsvirkjun.
Elding's involvement meant that a generator on board Elding was replaced by an Auxiliary Power Unit, i.e. a fuel cell and battery unit that runs on hydrogen. The idea was that the Auxiliary Power Unit would provide energy on board for navigation, light and various other modules that run on electricity. The intention was to shut down the main engine when the boat was around whales and to be able to hear and experience the animals more intimately than before. A hydrogen filling device was therefore designed on the pier where Elding is docked between tours.
This project was a very important step to test hydrogen technology in marine conditions, which are damp, shaky, wavy and wet. Even though the experiment is now over it has been an inspiration for finding less-polluting energy sources to run our operations and we will do our best to continue these researches in the future.
Read more about the SMART-H2 project.