European Project ZHENIT
In 2018, the International Maritime Organization adopted a global strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from international shipments by at least 50% by 2050. The European Commission (EC) has even more ambitious goals: to cut transports emissions of at least 90% by the same date. ZHENIT aims at working in the direction of these objectives by focusing on solutions for the recovery of waste heat produced by systems on board of ships/vessels. In particular, the project is in line with EC objective for zero waste heat vessels (zero-WH).
ZHENIT is a project funded by the Horizon Europe research and innovation program of the European Union (EU): 11 partners (including Gruppo SIGLA - a company of the Relatech Group - RINA Consulting, CNR, TECNALIA and ANEK) and 4 affiliates from 7 different countries, including 6 EU, collaborate with the aim, precisely, of implementing key solutions for having zero waste heat vessels.
In this context, ZHENIT works to decarbonise the maritime sector and aims at implementing and experimenting a solution capable of reducing the ship's overall primary energy requirements by up to 25%. The project wants to fully utilize the overall waste heat on board (WH) for the development and validation of solutions both in the laboratory and on board. The solution therefore wants to achieve a so-called TRL5 (Technology Readiness Level) 5, which requires the technology to be validated in an industrial environment relevant to the technologies tested. The valorization of waste heat designed during the project takes into consideration different temperatures and different heat sources to be reused in different final products (so-called WH-to-X). The project also aims at coupling the reuse of waste heat with alternative propulsion systems (i.e., a wingsail), with ICT monitoring / energy management solutions and with thermal energy accumulators.
The solution will be tested in two operational use cases, at the Tecnalia laboratories and on the La Naumon ship (Spanish General Cargo Ship owned by the La Fura dels Baus theater company) involving the entire consortium for the design, development and commissioning of the two experimental systems. The Kick-Off Meeting of the project took place last June 17 at the RINA Consulting headquarters in Milan, where it was possible to meet most of the Consortium partners and discuss the common objectives.
Within the project, Gruppo SIGLA collaborates with partners for the design and implementation of the customized controller for the automation of the logics of use of waste heat and for the optimization of the energy parameters of all the systems involved on board of vessels.