The second MariNH3 conference, held in Nottingham on June 26 2024, brought together over 100 delegates to showcase the progress of the £5.5 million research programme aimed at decarbonising commercial shipping through green ammonia.

Prof. Al Cairns, MariNH3 Programme Director

Funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the programme is focused on new engine technologies, and effective policy implementation. The conference featured researchers from Nottingham, Birmingham, Brighton, and Cardiff universities, who presented transformative results demonstrating ammonia’s viability as a maritime fuel.

Key technical presentations covered topics such as:

  • Aftertreatment systems for ammonia-fuelled engines
  • The feasibility of the split cycle engine
  • Metal hydride-ammonia systems for onboard hydrogen production
  • Ammonia and hydrogen co-fuelling in modern spark ignition engines
  • Ammonia sprays and fuel blends.

The conference also addressed legislative frameworks needed to support the adoption of green ammonia, examining barriers to adoption and challenges in technology acceptance based on data from secondary materials, expert interviews, and workshops.

Keynote speakers included:

  • Dr Mike Rendall, Chief Technology Officer at AFC Energy, who discussed ammonia crackers for decarbonising heavy shipping.
  • Dr Thomas Beard from BMT, who explored the impact of alternative fuels on vessel design.
  • Professor Christine Rousselle from Université d’Orléans, who presented on the global atmospheric pollution implications of ammonia engines.

This gathering of industry and academic representatives emphasised the potential of ammonia as a sustainable maritime fuel and highlighted the ongoing research and developments needed to overcome the associated technical, economic, and social barriers.

Photography: Rae Dowling