and Ambition

The proliferation of Hydrogen, as one of the primary fuels in achieving decarbonization, necessitates addressing key enabling technologies and fundamental issues concerning storage and transportation.

Transport plays a key role both in the cohesion of the European Union and in its growth through trade with the rest of the world. Thus, it has been of fundamental importance for economic growth, employment, and equality. However, as transport is a key component of our daily life, the carbon footprint of our transport activities has grown. According to EIB (Transport Lending Policy 2022), “the negative climate, environmental, safety and congestion externalities of transport as well as its unequal availability to users have reached unacceptable levels.” Decarbonization efforts culminated in the clear commitment of the recent European Green Deal Strategy, which seeks for a 90% reduction in emissions by 2050 through the introduction of more sustainable, affordable, accessible, healthier, and cleaner alternatives. The decarbonization policies clearly offer an opportunity for fundamental challenges in various sectors. Both industry and governments have shown interest in decarbonization projects.

One fuel that is central to these policies is Hydrogen (H₂). For the development of an H₂-based economy, a key enabling technology and the fundamental problem to be addressed is its storage and transportation. H₂ has the highest energy per mass of any fuel but its low ambient temperature density results in a low energy per unit volume, therefore, requiring the development of advanced storage methods that will allow the storage and transportation (for energy generation as well) over longer distances from places where they can be produced at a significantly reduced cost, to regions where they are mostly needed. The most efficient way of transportation of H₂ is in liquid form (i.e., in -253 °C and in a reduction in volume by approximately 800 times over its gaseous phase).

In the above framework the overall goal of LH2CRAFT is to develop a next generation sustainable, commercially attractive, and safe technology for long-term storage and long-distance transportation of LH₂ on ships;
to be realised by developing new design solutions for storage at a temperature of 20 K and demonstrating it on a 180 m³ containment system.

Two societal objectives will be served: society’s needs and EU’s strong global maritime leadership with major impacts on EU´s innovation-driven industry providing highly skilled jobs, efficient technological solutions, and international regulatory standards.

LH2CRAFT key objectives

Safe, cost and energy efficient storage and transportation of large LH₂ quantities over longer distances

Develop an LH₂ cargo containment system (CCS) for shipping, exceeding currently demonstrated sizes

Design modular and scalable LH₂ storage to large dimensions, similar to those of existing LNG carriers

Achieve AiP for CCS concept and general approval by major IACS classification societies

Demonstrate the CCS via the detailed design, construction, and testing of a reduced size prototype

Develop a safe preliminary integrated ship design and carry out the corresponding cost estimation

LH2CRAFT aspires to be a beacon project for H2 transportation vessels


LH2CRAFT has the ambition to develop a next generation sustainable, commercially attractive, and safe containment technology for long-term storage and transportation of LH₂
on ships. It aims at developing an innovative containment system of membrane-type that will be available for all commercial vessels carrying H₂ as cargo (or even as fuel in certain applications) over longer distances and in large volumes (in liquid form). This process will be realized by developing innovative design solutions that aim in achieving a large storage capacity of liquid H₂ (e.g., 200,000 m³) at a temperature of 20 K and demonstrating it on an approx. 180 m³ containment system.


LH2CRAFT results in strengthening the competitiveness, growth and sustainability of European companies and research organizations based also on experiences gained from the extensive shipbuilding activity in South Korea, transferring thus useful design and practical know-how and extending it further.

LH2CRAFT aims to globalize the core technologies and technology enablers it develops, while offering distinct advantages to Europe’s SMEs, vessel designers, engineering firms, ship owners, operators, and other industrial users. Our vision is to facilitate widespread commercialization, fostering innovation and empowering various stakeholders in the maritime industry.

LH2CRAFT plays a crucial role in developing class guidelines to establish large H₂-based vertical supply chains. By fostering collaboration between industry, research, and end users, we ensure excellence in Europe. Drawing from existing EU knowledge and practical experience from Far East shipbuilding, we boost the EU shipping industry’s competitiveness and open up new H2-based transportation markets in various sectors. Our broader goal encompasses creating a common understanding among participating Class Bodies regarding guidelines and exploring alternative solutions, such as different types of CCS and utilizing LH2 as both fuel and cargo. These considerations form an integral part of our enhanced scope in WP2.

LH2CRAFT economic & technological outcomes and impacts

LH2CRAFT has a direct outcome and impact on the Partners and the field, and will deliver:

Work Package

The work plan is structured in four thematic pillars including 11 Work Packages. All 14 partners cooperate together to achieve 8 milestones, succeed at 39 deliverables, and interrelate with numerous inputs and outputs between the WPs.

Impact pillar includes the WP Project Management, Dissemination and Technical Rules, which focus interrelated work of the partners, the outer presentation of the results and the impact on the community and provide the technical rules for the next generation of liquid H₂-fuelled ships.

Design & Engineering pillar focuses on system and subsystems designing. Based on a system engineering approach provides the core technologies for a safe storage and supply of H₂.

Demonstration pillar delivers the physical demonstration, which prove the core technologies and the tools to accelerate the storage and handling and distribution for H₂-powered vessels.

Sustainability and Scalability pillar evaluates the financial sustainability, the performance and the scalability potential of the developed solutions for H₂-fuelled ships. Within the same pillar, procedures and design guidelines are developed to ensure the safe operation of fuel storage and supply subsystems.