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KSOE Opens European R&D Center to Step Up Cooperation on Technology with Global Counterparts

Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering (KSOE), the intermediate holding company for Hyundai Heavy Industries Group’s shipbuilding operations, is set to expand its global technology cooperation network with the aim of pioneering future eco-friendly and digital technology. 

KSOE announced on April 12 that it has recently held the opening ceremony of its European R&D center located in Dusseldorf, Germany. The event was attended by key stakeholders, including Kim Sung-joon, Head of KSOE’s Advanced Research Center; Huh Seung-jae, Consul General of the Embassy of the Republic of Korea; and Felix Neugart, CEO of NRW.Global Business, the trade and investment agency of the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. 

With the European R&D center serving as a base, KSOE will work with global research institutes to secure next-generation shipbuilding technology on hydrogen, fuel cells, ammonia, and electric propulsion, among others, expanding its technology cooperation network into major European countries such as the UK and Norway going forward. 

Following the opening ceremony, KSOE also had a kick-off meeting with RWTH Aachen University to initiate a joint research program on a future-leading propulsion system for large ships running on green energy, such as hydrogen and ammonia. The two parties signed a letter of intent (LOI) for research collaboration in December last year. 

“I am very excited about this opportunity to work with the world’s No. 1 shipyard to develop future-leading technology for large merchant ships,” said Professor Jakob Andert, who directs the Teaching and Research Area ‘Mechatronics in Mobile Propulsion’ at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of RWTH Aachen University. “Our collaboration will mark a significant milestone in shaping the future of KSOE’s ship propulsion systems using its independent technology solutions.” 

Further, KSOE has been in talks for technology collaboration with other leading R&D centers in Europe specializing in hydrogen and fuel cells, including Institute for Maritime Energy Systems at the German Aerospace Center (DLR). 

“The plan is to expand our global R&D infrastructure through the new European R&D center by attracting a competent chief technology officer (CTO) and excellent research resources from the local talent pool,” said an official of KSOE. “With the center serving as an innovation outpost, we are poised to take the lead in next-generation technology for future ships.”