Kochi Water Metro Submits Proposal For First Hydrogen-Powered Ferry

Kochi Water Metro Submits Proposal For First Hydrogen-Powered Ferry

Last Updated: March 28, 2024, 17:10 IST

Kochi Water Metro Submits Proposal For First Hydrogen-Powered Ferry. (Photo: India Times)

Water Metro’s much-anticipated Fort Kochi route trial run is expected to take place in the coming weeks, as terminal construction in Fort Kochi nears completion.

Kerala’s Kochi Water Metro is prioritising sustainability and prompting its research team to explore hydrogen fuel cell technology.

As per a report in The New Indian Express, the project aims to introduce a vessel powered by green hydrogen in the near future. Kochi Water Metro Limited (KWML) managing director (MD) Loknath Behera stated that staying ahead of the curve in terms of technological advancement is important for ensuring sustainability.

“Our existing electric boat fleet will become redundant in the next five to ten years, and new technology will be introduced. We are now exploring the possibility of introducing a hydrogen-fuel-cell vessel, developed by Cochin Shipyard Ltd (CSL). Large-scale adoption will be examined for our future boats. However, some modifications will be required to make them cost-effective,” KWML, MD, Loknath Behera said as quoted by The New Indian Express. Green hydrogen is now quite expensive, but this won’t be the case in the future, he added.

Following the recent start of operations on the South Chittoor, Eloor, and Cheranalloor sections, KWML, MD, Loknath Behera stated that the Fort Kochi-High Court stretch is next in line.

Giving further updates, he asserted that the trial run for parking boats near the floating pontoon at Fort Kochi port has been finished, and the boats will be tested on the path between High Court and Fort Kochi in the days to come.

KWML, MD, Behera shared information about the services, stating that they intend to begin operations on the line in April 2024, with a focus on tourists. The goal is to run three boats on the route once service begins, he said, adding that CSL is anticipated to supply one more boat soon.

With schools closed for summer vacations, the High Court-Fort Kochi service will appeal to more tourists. Kochi Water Metro currently provides service on the High Court-Vypeen, High Court-Bolgatty, High Court-South Chittoor, South Chittoor-Cheranalloor, Cheranalloor-Eloor and Vyttila-Kakkanad routes.

In addition, the services connecting the High Court to Fort Kochi, one of the city’s key tourist attractions, are projected to significantly increase Kochi’s tourism industry.

Meanwhile, KWML has set up a floating pontoon and marine platform at the Fort Kochi Water Metro terminal. All of the ferry services’ boat jetties are equipped with concrete floating pontoons.

They allow for simple and safe boarding and deboarding regardless of the tide. Because the Fort Kochi terminal is located at the convergence of the Arabian Sea and backwaters, deploying regular floating pontoons could jeopardise passenger safety.

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