At the COSCO annual meeting in Shanghai last week, COSCO SHIPPING Energy Transportation Co., Ltd (CSET) and Dalian Industry Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. (DSIC) officially signed a Memorandum of Cooperation that will lead to the construction of the world’s first LNG Dual-Fuel VLCC (very large crude carrier). Their collective intention is to advance the use of LNG as a reduced-emission marine fuel.
This is also seen as an important step for the newbuild project to comply with Phase 3 of the IMO’s Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) for large ships which comes into force on January 1, 2025. The EEDI is a performance-based mechanism that requires a certain minimum energy efficiency in new ships. Ship designers and builders are free to choose the technologies to satisfy the EEDI requirements in a specific ship design. (Refer IMO Resolution MEPC.203(62). Phase 2 commences January 1, 2020 and concludes 31 December, 2024).
Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) will be used as the VLCC’s primary fuel for propulsion. With greatly reduced carbon emissions, sulphur emissions down by 95%, and lower NOx emissions, the vessel will meet the highest standards of IMO Tier III as well as be the first of this ship type to achieve EEDI Phase 3.
The cooperation between the two major groups is an important measure to implement China’s aim of creative, green, healthy and sustainable development, which has jointly led large ships to transform to more efficient and environmental trends.
International classification society DNV GL awarded DSIC an Approval in Principle (AiP) for its VLCC design in late 2015. The design uses type C fuel tanks located on the open deck which minimizes the impact on the overall layout and results in cargo capacity being unchanged from the conventional design. The LNG fuel tanks give the vessel the capability of performing a round trip from the Middle East to the US without refuelling.