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World’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to start trading



World’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to start trading. Image: UECC
World’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to start trading. Image: UECC
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UECC has taken delivery of the world’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC that is set to provide significant gains in energy efficiency and emissions reduction as it enters service this year to boost the leading European shortsea ro-ro carrier’s bold effort to decarbonise its fleet.

The vessel, to be named Auto Advance, is the first in a series of three newbuild pure car and truck carriers (PCTC) – measuring 169 by 28 metres and with capacity for 3600 vehicles on 10 cargo decks – that are being delivered from China’s Jiangnan Shipyard. The remaining two sister vessels are scheduled for delivery in 2022.

“Having brought into operation the first-ever dual-fuel LNG PCTCs five years ago, UECC is now taking delivery of the first of three of the world’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to be built. This is another big step forward in eco-friendly ship operations that shows we walk the talk,” says UECC chief executive Glenn Edvardsen.

“This is also a technological milestone as the successful performance of the vessel in sea trials has vindicated our confidence in the viability of this innovative solution.”

UECC has taken the lead in the PCTC segment by developing the pioneering design, together with DNV and Jiangnan’s in-house ship designer Shanghai Merchant Ship Design & Research Institute, to incorporate proven technology in a new configuration geared to enhancing operational and environmental performance.

Technology puzzle

LNG battery hybrid technology, together with an optimised hull design for better fuel efficiency, will enable these newbuilds to exceed the IMO requirement to cut carbon intensity by 40% from 2008 levels within 2030.

Emissions of carbon dioxide will be reduced by around 25%, SOx and particulate matter by 90% and NOx by 85% from the use of LNG, while the newbuilds will also meet the IMO’s Tier 3 NOx emissions limitations for the North Sea and Baltic Sea.

Dual-fuel engine technology has now been combined with an energy storage system (ESS), supplied by Finland’s WE Tech, incorporating a battery package from Corvus Energy that will be charged by a permanent magnet, directly driven shaft generator or dual-fuelled generators.

The ESS, which will provide power to the main switchboard with a DC link for power distribution, will enable peak shaving for the main engine and auxiliaries to reduce fuel consumption and emissions, with a controllable pitch propeller, bulb rudder and dual-fuel boiler also part of the power system.

These vessels will require only two auxiliary dual-fuel gensets, in addition to the main engine, as the ESS and shaft generator provide a spinning reserve to eliminate the need for another genset that would normally be required.

Smart energy management

Battery capacity is based on detailed modelling of the vessels’ expected operational profile to economise on installation, with payback time for the ESS estimated at only five years, according to UECC’s head of ship management and newbuilding Jan Thore Foss.

The hybrid solution, which has gained DNV’s Battery Safety notation, will be steered by an intelligent energy management system, supplied by Kongsberg Maritime, that will serve as a control system for overall energy production and consumption – essentially the ‘energy brain’ of the vessel.

Batteries can be most efficiently charged while at sea using the shaft generator so that they are fully charged when entering port, enabling the vessel to manoeuvre in port using bow thrusters driven solely by battery power that can also supply the ship’s other energy needs while it is docked.

“This will effectively eliminate emissions while in port and these vessels are also equipped to connect to green power from shore that is becoming increasingly available in order to reduce harmful emissions of NOx, SOx and particulate matter,” Foss says.

Operational flexibility can deliver significant fuel efficiency gains and Foss believes this, combined with a low-emissions profile, will give the vessels an advantage in the European market as EU plans to include shipping in the Emissions Trading System are set to hike costs for pollutive vessels.

Fuel optionality

UECC’s energy and sustainability manager Daniel Gent says: “LNG is presently the most environment-friendly and widely available low-carbon fuel, with an estimated emissions reduction of around 25% compared with other fossil fuels.

“We are therefore taking advantage of the best available fuel solution now and combining this with hybrid technology to further cut emissions. But we are not locked into LNG and these dual-fuel engines are also ready to use alternative low-emission fuels such as biofuel, bio-LNG and synthetic LNG as these become commercially and technically viable.”

Edvardsen claims that UECC, jointly owned by green-focused players NYK and Wallenius Lines, is presently the only shipping company in its regional market segment that is investing in sustainable newbuilds.

“UECC has already achieved a substantial reduction in the carbon intensity of its fleet, but we aspire to do much more,” he concludes.

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NYK signs a charter contract with Osaka Gas International Transport



NYK signs a charter contract with Osaka Gas International Transport. Image: NYK Line
NYK signs a charter contract with Osaka Gas International Transport. Image: NYK Line
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In September, NYK signed a multi-year time charter contract with Osaka Gas International Transport Inc., a Daigas Group company, for a new LNG carrier.

This vessel, named “Grace Freesia,” comes equipped with a WinGD-made dual-fuel slow-speed diesel engine, i.e., X-DF diesel engine that has superior fuel-consumption efficiency and can operate on marine gas oil or boil off gas stored in the cargo tank.

The carrier also features a re-liquefaction system that can use surplus boil-off gas efficiently. The cargo tank is a 174,000 cubic meter capacity membrane-type tank that makes use of advanced insulating materials to suppress the boil-off rate in the cargo tank and realizes significantly more efficient, economical, and environmentally friendly operation.

By utilizing its experience and network cultivated as a world-scale LNG-carrier owning-and-managing company, NYK is contributing to Japan’s stable energy supply.

<Vessel Particulars>

Length overall: 297.160 meters
Breadth: 46.40 meters
Cargo tank capacity: 173,956 m3
Main engine: X-DF engine
Shipbuilder: Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries Co., Ltd.
Flag: Bahamas
Delivery: 2022

In February 2021, NYK released the “NYK Group ESG Story,” which aims to further integrate ESG into the company’s management strategy and promotes activities that contribute to the achievement of the SDGs through business activities. In March this year, NYK released the updated “NYK Group ESG Story 2022,” which introduces initiatives for integrating ESG into the Group’s management strategies set forth in the “NYK Group ESG Story” and provides a partial explanation of the Group’s sustainable growth strategy from a long-term perspective.

To strongly promote ESG management, the NYK Group will encourage new value creation as a sustainable solution provider through a business strategy that includes the transportation of LNG, which is expected to be a low-carbon bridging fuel prior to the transition to future zero-emission fuels.

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Damen delivers complete equipment package for KOEM multipurpose vessel



Damen delivers complete equipment package for KOEM multipurpose vessel. Image: Damen Shipyards
Damen delivers complete equipment package for KOEM multipurpose vessel. Image: Damen Shipyards
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Damen Shipyards delivered a complete equipment package for the multipurpose vessel ENDAM. Owned by the Korean Marine Environment Management Corporation, the newbuild combines emergency oil spill recovery activities with maintenance dredging tasks.

With a 4,100 m3 hopper hold, the vessel was built by HJ Shipbuilding & Construction at its Busan yard and designed by KmsEmec. The mission equipment package provided by the Damen Technical Cooperation team included a 15 m rigid oil sweep arm with a dedicated pump and handling crane for the emergency oil spill recovery functionality, and a complete turnkey dredging system, which was designed specifically for the vessel.

Turnkey dredge package

The turnkey dredge package consisted of both loading and discharging equipment, a hydraulic system, dredging control system and various drives. A 900 mm trailing suction pipe, designed to dredge at a maximum depth of -30m, is hoisted by three dedicated gantries and their hydraulically operated winches. All the trailing suction pipe components are located starboard aft.

A Damen dredge pump, type BP9075HD, completed the dredge pipe arrangements. The highly efficient slurry pump is designed for both suction dredging, as well as discharging over the bow using the bow coupling unit or rainbow nozzle. This hopper discharging equipment, including 12 bottom dump valves which Damen designed, were all part of the dredge package. Furthermore, dredge valves in various pressure stages were delivered for the suction and discharge piping. Dedicated dredging instrumentation completed the package. This is crucial to monitor and visualise the dredging process and to optimise the dredging operations.

Component integration

Due to the DTC team’s extensive experience in component integration at non-Damen yards, the large system parts were delivered from the Netherlands and integrated effortlessly. As well as the mission equipment, the delivery scope included a hydraulic system. This is a logical choice as the dredging equipment is its main user. Additionally, a 3,500-kW electric dredge pump drive and a 1,000-kW electric jet water pump drive were shipped to Korea. The delivery was completed with a full set of spares and Damen also carried out the commissioning and training on board.

The vessel was named ENDAM, which means ‘the fence that protects you’ in the Korean Jeju dialect. A festive handover ceremony took place in the summer and ENDAM has successfully started operating along the Korean coast.

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Kongsberg Digital delivers dynamic positioning simulators to MOL



Kongsberg Digital delivers dynamic positioning simulators to MOL. Image: Kongsberg Digital
Kongsberg Digital delivers dynamic positioning simulators to MOL. Image: Kongsberg Digital
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MOL DPTC is the first DP training centre in Japan to be accredited by the Nautical Institute to provide NI-approved dynamic positioning training courses.

The delivery includes a K-Sim DP Anchor Handling simulator to support advanced offshore training, as well as four KONGSBERG K-Pos DP Basic desktop simulators for basic DP training, including instructor stations to manage the exercises.

As part of the contract, KDI will also deliver a newly developed hydrodynamic ship model; a digital version of the DP2 cable laying vessel KDDI Cable Infinity, owned by Kokusai Cable Ship Co., Ltd.

The simulator will be used to provide NI-approved DP training courses for MOL crew and the company’s customers. It will also be used to develop and provide customized training for cable-laying operations, offshore wind power related projects, or other offshore projects that utilize dynamic positioning systems. Furthermore, the simulator will also be made available for research and consulting services to serve the wider maritime industry.

The NI training scheme for obtaining a Dynamic Positioning Operator certificate has formerly been a time-consuming process, involving onshore courses and ‘real life’ DP watch keeping experience on DP vessels.

The K-Sim DP Class A simulator is approved to be used for DP Seatime Reduction training under the Nautical Institute’s training scheme. K-Sim integrates with an advanced physics engine which, in addition to hydrodynamic modelling allows vessels, objects and equipment to behave and interact realistically. This is extremely important for making competence training adaptable to real-life operations.

Aditionally, KDI has signed a five-year Long-Term System Support Program contract with MOL Marine and Engineering Co. Ltd. to keep the simulator maintained in top condition. This ensures hassle free operations and support, and any new system updates will be actively managed by KDI.

“This contract signifies recognition of Kongsberg Digital’s Maritime Simulation and DP technologies by one of the largest shipping companies in the world,” says Andreas Jagtøyen, Executive Vice President Digital Ocean, Kongsberg Digital. “The K-Sim DP Class A simulator has the necessary fidelity and realism required for engineering, training and mission planning, as well as assessment of existing and new crews, where various challenging operations can be studied, evaluated and optimized safely in the simulator.”

“We Installed Kongsberg DP simulator and were able to open a quality DP training center in Tokyo, Japan” says Mr. Nakashima Takashi, President, MOL Marine and Engineering Co., Ltd. “We believe that MOL Group can contribute more and more to the offshore wind power business, which is in high demand in Japan.”

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