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November 30, 2023

Suiso Frontier, world’s first largest shipment of liquid hydrogen departs from Australia

By Piriti Naik

World’s first largest international shipment of liquid hydrogen has departed for its way to Japan. The demonstration project Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain pilot project (HESC) is organized between Japan and Australia. This designed ship carrying hydrogen is viewed as the next big milestone in a project that seeks to demonstrate the world’s first fully-integrated hydrogen supply chain while providing the information to access the feasibility of scaling up to full-scale operations.

The Suiso Frontier was built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries in Japan as part of the project which seeks to transport liquefied hydrogen at 1/800 of its original gas-state volume. The vessel was launched in 2019 and underwent extensive testing before departing Japan in December 2021 and arriving in mid-January in Australia.

Hirofumi Kawazoe, Hydrogen Engineering Australia’s General Manager said, “We have successfully completed all safety, technical and operational aspects of the loading of liquefied hydrogen.” The HESC team reports it was able to test and validate the loading of liquefied hydrogen into the Suiso Frontier’s specially built vacuum-insulated tank.

The hydrogen gas, which is produced from Australian brown coal (also known as lignite) and biomass via gasification, was transported by truck to liquefaction and loading terminal at the Port of Hastings, Australia. There it was cooled to -253 degrees Celsius at the Hastings hydrogen liquefaction plant and then transferred to the purpose-built tank aboard the Suiso Frontier. The vessel, which is reported to be carrying about 70 percent of its maximum capacity of approximately 75 tons of liquefied hydrogen, maintains the liquefied hydrogen at the required temperature throughout the voyage.

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