Ammonia powered trawler

Lerøy Havfisk AS is a part of Lerøy Seafood Group, and is one of Norway’s largest trawler companies with 10 vessels with fishing rights in operation. The company has its main office in Ålesund, and offices in Stamsund and Hammerfest.

The background and the motivation for this pilot study is Lerøy Seafood Groups strategical ambitions to reduce their CO2 footprint with 46% within 2030. It is also assumed that emission reduction regulations and requirements from other stakeholders will become more important and stricter in the years to come.

A traditional trawler design does not easily lend itself to integration of systems for storage and distribution of alternative fuels. The operational logistics will to a large degree dictate how the vessel’s equipment and functions are arranged. The trawler deck seizes the available area on the open deck, while the factory and cooling- and freezing rooms occupy a lot of space below deck. The handling and production of excess raw materials also require space below. It will therefore be difficult to avoid a significant increase in main dimensions for an ammonia powered trawler of the type operated by Lerøy Havfisk.

Large ocean-going trawlers have relatively high fuel consumption and emissions, with challenging operational conditions and extended sailing distances. Trips of up to 5 weeks require large amounts of fuel.

Trawler illustration

Lerøy Havfisk is the overseeing partner for this project. Additional partners are listed to the right. Other contributors are: Skipsteknikk

Goal of pilot project

Lerøy Havfisk aims to carry out a feasibility study related to implementing dual-fuel ammonia solutions for a larger sea-going trawler, including technical solutions, risk aspects and cost efficiency.

The study intends to map the barriers for implementation onboard and any limiting effect on operations.

The questions this pilot aim to answer are:

  • To what extent can the operational pattern of the current trawler fleet be supported with ammonia as fuel?
  • Can the experience large trawlers have with ammonia as cooling medium in refrigeration plants be of importance for safe implementation of ammonia as fuel?
  • What environmental benefits can be achieved, and to what cost?

In total the pilot shall give answer to if it is technical possible to implement an ammonia fueled system for a newbuild with similar performance as the current modern trawlers in the Lerøy Havfisk fleet.

The long-term goal is to prepare the largest trawlers for use of ammonia as fuel.


This pilot had kick off meeting in the beginning of January 2022 and the partners have defined 6 work packages related to optimization of tank design, integration of storage and distribution onboard, optimization of propulsion and power generating systems, cost of implementation and availability of fuels. Lerøy havfisk has as a goal to present the preliminary results by the fall 2022 and a finished report by the end of the year.

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