INTERVIEW TO Valeria Palomba AND Andrea Frazzica FROM CNR-ITAE
Tell us about CNR-ITAE. What is your core business and role within the project?
The Institute of Advanced Energy Technologies (ITAE) of the National Council of Research (CNR) of Italy has been working for many years on sustainable technologies, mainly for the integration of renewables, hydrogen production, storage and utilization and thermal energy conversion and utilization. In ENGIMMONIA, the expertise of ITAE on sorption technologies will be exploited to design, in collaboration with FAHRENHEIT, and test an adsorption chiller that will be installed on board of ANEK vessel.
Why did your organisation get involved in the ENGIMMONIA project? How does this activity fit with the normal business of your organisation?
ITAE and FAHRENHEIT have a longstanding collaboration for the joint development of sorption systems for different applications. In addition, ITAE has been involved in different national and regional projects for the deployment of waste heat recovery and utilization on board of different type of vessels over the years, which created the basis for ENGIMMONIA foreseen technological development and first TRL4 validation of sorption technology on board.
How do you expect the maritime transport sector to be like in the future?
The maritime transport sector is experiencing a strong pull towards energy efficiency, not only regarding the propulsion, but the overall energy system and its management. Therefore, we expect, in the short and medium term, that several innovative solutions will be proven in the operational conditions, that will be commercially deployed in the next years.
Which are the most significant challenges and opportunities related to the use of ammonia/clean energy solutions in the maritime sector in your opinion?
Two main challenges regarding the use of ammonia and other clean energy solutions have to be faced: on the one hand, experimental proofs of the validity of the technologies is needed. Indeed, several technologies have been extensively validated in terrestrial applications, but their adaptation and design for marine environment requires dedicated efforts. At the same time, regulatory and policy issues have to be tackled.
What are your expectations of the ENGIMMONIA project?
We mainly aim at proving in real environment a waste-heat recovery solution for cooling purposes with high efficiency, participating actively in the replication phase, and, at the same time, start a broader collaborations on energy efficiency in maritime applications.