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Japan gets into ammonia-fuelled vessels

Ammonia is gradually joining the group of transition fuels after liquefied natural gas (LNG)

ClassNK issued an Approval in Principle (AiP) for the design of an ammonia-fuelled Panamax bulk carrier developed by Planning and Design Center for Greener Ships (GSC). Incidentally, GSC is a Japanese organisation established in December 2020 focused on commercialising the next generation of greener vessels, through advanced environmental performance-enhancing technologies in designs that respond to tightening of environmental regulations.

Starting small with ammonia
For GSC’s 65,000 dwt vessel design, ClassNK reviewed the ammonia treatment measures, piping diagram of the fuel supply system, identification of hazardous area taking into account the flammability and toxicity of ammonia, and evacuation routes in case of emergency in line with the Guidelines. Verifying the conformity to their requirements, ClassNK issued the AiP. GSC member shipbuilders in Japan are expected to utilise the approved basic design information for their upcoming product development of ammonia-fuelled bulk carriers.

Ammonia is currently one of the popular fuel options as it does not emit carbon dioxide (CO2) when burnt. The industry has yet to develop international standards for using ammonia-fuelled vessels. ClassNK however published its “Guidelines for Ships Using Alternative Fuels” in August 2021 to minimise the risks related to ammonia-fuelled ships for crew, and the environment by stipulating requirements for installation, controls, and safety devices.

On the side, Dalian Shipbuilding (DSIC), part of China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) signed 6 ammonia-ready, dual-fuel,16,000 teu containership construction contract with an undisclosed European owner. The vessels will be in 366m long and equipped with WinGD main engine, the latest iCER-Diesel system, as well as a shaft generator and an air lubrication system to improve the vessels’ economic performance and reduce the emissions. The vessels will be built by DSIC’s headquarter yard in Dalian and Tianjin. DSIC also entered into a contract with Polska Żegluga Morska P.P for the construction of 4 37,000 dwt bulk carriers, which will be built by DSIC’s Shanhaiguan shipbuilding base.

Marine Online News Team
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