THE FUEL CELL TECHNOLOGY, A POSSIBILITY IN THE MONACO E-PROGRAM

by Marco Volpato

MONACO. On October 4, 2018, SBM Offshore participated in the Monaco Economic Board (MEB) Trade Mission to Beijing in September, as part of a state visit by HSH Prince Albert II in occasion of the exhibition Princes and Princesses of Monaco.

SBM Offshore used the event to coincide with the signing of three memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with key Chinese companies: ICBC Leasing, China Merchant Industry Holdings and China Petroleum Technology and Development Corporation. This was the result of engagement with the partners to strengthen mutual cooperation going forward on relevant activities. Present at the signature of the collaboration agreements for SBM Offshore were Bernard van Leggelo, MD China and Singapore, Kane Kin Bak Siew, Business Development Director China and Herve Lalli, Business Development Director Monaco. Designed to strengthen relations between SBM Offshore and its partners, the MoUs will serve to boost business, industry and financial support with some of the most influential companies in the market. “The MoUs are a step towards further collaboration as we continue to develop our experience and valued partnerships in China. This is another solid step along that path,” said Bernard van Leggelo, MD China and Singapore.

 

 

Background

China is where the real growth lies… A decade ago, China quietly turned the small city of Yunfu into an alternative energy juggernaut.What was once barren hills is now an industrial park that churns out hundreds of electric cars and buses each year. You and I both know why the Chinese are concerned about air pollution. Back in October 2013, China issued its first red alert for smog, the most serious level on its air quality index. And sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words. In this case, just imagine waking up to a morning commute that looks a little like this:

Can you really blame them for investing almost $60 billion in subsidizing alternative energy companies in this city?China didn’t discover some crazy new fuel source or how to make better lithium-ion batteries. It simply invested in an emerging fuel source with way more potential. And thanks to a recent breakthrough, that fuel source is primed to become the dominant fuel source on the planet. I’m talking about fuel cell technology — energy derived from the most abundant element on the planet! Until recently, hydrogen power was somewhat cumbersome to produce. But after decades of experimentation the U:S: Army made a discovery that opened the floodgates. The new method produces hydrogen energy at almost 100% efficiency in just three minutes, up from 50% efficiency in several hours. Not only is it twice as efficient, but it also takes a fraction of the time, dramatically lowering production costs.This means hydrogen-powered cars will finally see mass commercialization. And China is well ahead of the curve — 10 years ahead, to be exact. It saw the potential and poured almost $60 billion into developing the cars and buses that can capitalize on this breakthrough. Is the future of the trucking industry paved in fuel cells? China is where the real growth lies… and Toyota thinks so. The auto giant is teaming up with Kenworth to test out a new run of trucks powered by hydrogen fuel cells. The Kenworth T680 will be modified with Toyota’s powertrain, which is powered by fuel cell technology. According to them, it makes more sense than using batteries. As for the Principality, will the SMB Offshore follow? Furthrmore, will the Monaco next e-prix, which is returning to the formula E on May 13 2019, the occasion for the Monaco/China business relations to promote hydrogen-powered cars?

 

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