Swiss battery maker secures DNV certification for MRS marine battery
Leclanché has launched a new type of battery aimed at marine applications.
The company’s Marine Rack System (MRS) is a modular, Lithium-ion battery system intended to reduce emissions and the operational costs of marine vessels. Reportedly, the MRS is the first marine battery system of its type to be approved by certification body DNV-GL, under revised rules issued in October 2015.
The MRS will be used on the pioneering E-ferry project in Denmark, which is expected to be the world’s largest fully-electric ferry by battery capacity. Equipped with a 4.3 MWh Leclanché MRS Lithium-ion battery, the vessel is scheduled for launch later this year.
The vessel will sail between the island Aeroe (Ærø) and the mainland, and its on-board MRS will be able to carry it a record 60 nautical miles (110 km) on a single charge. Fully laden the 650-tonne vessel can carry 31 cars or 5 trucks on open deck, 147 passengers in winter and 198 passengers during summer. The project is an EU Horizon 2020 project, as part of the EU’s 77 billion euro transport and energy research and innovation programme from 2014 to 2020.
Anil Srivastava, CEO of Leclanché, said: “There is a huge opportunity for marine vessels across the world to reduce their harmful emissions and cut their operating costs by leveraging battery storage technology. This is why we developed the MRS and we are delighted that it is the world’s first such solution to receive type approval from DNV-GL. This certification opens up a very exciting and substantial global market for Leclanché.”
The company performed multiple fire propagation tests to ensure that the battery system performed safely, in even the most extreme situations. With the requirement to pass close to 20 separate tests, the DNV-GL certification process sets the benchmark for battery system safety in marine applications.
The company’s VP for E-Transportation, Antti Väyrynen, also commented: “Type approval is an important catalyst to our market growth as it significantly simplifies the certification process of each vessel that uses the Leclanché MRS.”
No doubt Leclanché will be eyeing the growing trend for the electrification of short-haul ferries, especially in Scandinavia. It notes that nearly 200 ferry routes could be electric within the next decade and over 1,000 ships could be converted across Europe. Indeed, it may also have applications other pioneering projects in the region.
The Leclanché MRS can also be used in other marine applications, including hybridisation and peak shaving of auxiliary loads of cargo vessels and cruise ships, or to power direct positioning systems (DPS) on service vessels. Evidently, electrification of the marine industry is no longer on the horizon – it’s already here.