FueLNG, a joint venture between Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd (Keppel O&M) and Shell Eastern Petroleum (Pte) Ltd, has placed an order with Keppel Singmarine Pte Ltd, a subsidiary of Keppel O&M, to build the first Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) bunkering vessel. The construction of the 7,500m3 LNG bunkering vessel is projected to be completed in 3Q 2020 and will enable provision of ship-to-ship LNG bunkering services in Singapore.
FueLNG will receive a grant of up to $3 million as part of the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore’s (MPA) LNG Bunkering Pilot Programme (LBPP).
Keppel Singmarine announced in April it had also secured a contract with Mitsui & Co (Asia Pacific) Pte Ltd to build Singapore’s first dual-fuel bunker tanker, to be owned and operated by Sinanju Tankers Holdings Pte Ltd, based on a finance agreement with Mitsui AP. The vessel is planned for completion in 2H 2019.
Commenting on the FueLNG vessel, Mr Chris Ong, Chairman of FueLNG and CEO of Keppel O&M, said, “Tapping on Keppel’s shipbuilding expertise enables us to have a highly capable vessel that meets our requirements for safety and efficiency. Supported by Shell’s experience, we aim to be a key driver in promoting LNG as marine fuel.”
Mr Lauran Wetemans, Director, FueLNG and General Manager, Shell Downstream LNG, added, “The decision to develop the LNG Bunker vessel demonstrates the confidence FueLNG has in LNG as a marine fuel. Singapore is a key maritime hub and both partners will contribute specific expertise in the venture with Shell using its global experience to make LNG a reality. We continue to work closely with the MPA, the port operators and industry stakeholders to ensure LNG bunkering will be available.”
Mr Andrew Tan, CEO of MPA, said, “We are pleased that FueLNG, Keppel and Shell are taking the lead in growing the LNG bunkering infrastructure in Singapore. As the world’s largest bunkering port, it is important that we support the development of LNG bunkering in our port to cater to future demand for LNG as a marine fuel.”
The FueLNG vessel will be built to the proprietary design, MTD 7500U LNG, developed by Keppel O&M’s ship design and development arm, Marine Technology Development (MTD), for cleaner and safer bunkering activities within the port of Singapore. Capable of running on both LNG and marine diesel oil, the vessel’s key features include high manoeuvrability which enables bunkering without tug assistance, as well as propulsion and power management systems that optimise fuel consumption.
Equipped with dual-fuel generator engines, the LNG bunkering vessel is more efficient than conventional bunker vessels. It is able to harness boil-off gas, a by-product of bunkering operations as well as the continuously evaporating LNG in the cryogenic tank, which would otherwise be flared off. It is also designed with a barge-like extended flat surface to provide bunker to a wide range of vessels.
As emissions standards tighten, globally, the industry is seeing increasing demand for LNG-fuelled ships, with 123 LNG-fuelled ships in operation and 150 on order as of early 2018. To meet this increasing demand, oil majors like Shell are expanding their LNG bunkering capabilities to increase the availability of LNG across the world. Having this capability in Singapore will complement the already established LNG bunkering infrastructure in key ports across the world.
Awarded the LNG bunker supplier license by the Singapore Maritime and Port Authority in 2016, FueLNG works with industry partners to build a world-class LNG bunkering network and encourage the adoption of LNG as a marine fuel.
Source: Adapted from a press release by Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd