Yanmar hydrogen engine for Zero Emission Ship Project

Hydrogen-fueled coastal vessel with electric propulsion Rendering of hydrogen fuel engine, electric propulsion ship. (Illustration: Yanmar Power Solutions)

Yanmar Power Technology Co., Ltd. (YPT), a subsidiary of Yanmar Holdings Co., LTD., announced it will work to develop a hydrogen-fueled four-stroke high-speed engine to be used in power generation for coastal vessels in Japan. The engine will be used in the Nippon Foundation’s zero-emission ship demonstration experiment, part of the “Zero-Emission Ship Project” that prioritizes development of hydrogen-fueled ships to achieve carbon neutrality in the coastal shipping sector by 2050.

Yanmar hydrogen engine Yanmar pilot injection six-cylinder hydrogen engine. (Illustration: Yanmar Power Solutions)

The coastal vessel design will incorporate a container unit-type hydrogen power generation system on its upper deck. Uyeno TransTech Co., Ltd., a shipping company in the Uyeno Group, will be responsible for the vessel’s development and construction. YPT will develop a pilot ignition engine for the vessel that utilizes a small amount of pilot biofuel and hydrogen co-combustion, as well as a spark ignition hydrogen-only engine.

In conjunction with the engine’s development, the company will work on creation of a hydrogen engine-compatible hybrid-electric propulsion vessel, combining hydrogen engine generators with batteries.

YPT plans to begin onshore verification tests in 2024 using a six-cylinder hydrogen engine with pilot ignition, with the goal of conducting verification operations by 2026. At the same time, it will conduct onshore verification tests using the spark ignition hydrogen-only engine. The aim is to achieve zero emissions for coastal vessels by approximately 2030 by promoting the adoption of hydrogen energy-based propulsion systems.


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