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For the environmentally-friendly cars of the future, Japan relies heavily on vehicles with fuel cells that leverage hydrogen to generate power. Yet, since the country itself does not produce enough hydrogen, it wants to outsource this to Australia, where hydrogen will be produced using energy from lignite-fired power plants; the CO2 emissions generated during this process will be captured and stored ( carbon capture and storage (CCS) ). Conglomerate Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI) has developed the carrier SUISO FRONTIER to transport hydrogen cooled to -253°C. The 116-m-long vessel can hold up to 1,250 m3 of highly compressed hydrogen and is deemed to be the world’s first hydrogen carrier.

However, the production of hydrogen via lignite-fired power plants in Australia is intended only as an interim solution. In the longer term, Japan wants to produce the gas using energy from renewable sources, such as surplus power from wind turbines.