Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries (HSHI) has successfully constructed the world's first LNG-fuelled large bulk carriers.
HSHI held a naming ceremony for the two 180 000 t bulk carriers operating on LNG on 11 December, which was attended by Chung Sye-kyun, Korea's Prime Minister; Kim Yung-rok, Governor of Jeollanamdo Province; Seo Myung-deuk, CEO of H-Line Shipping; Chang In-Hwa, President of POSCO; Ka Sam-hyun, Co-CEO of Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering (KSOE); and Kim Hyung Kwan, CEO of HSHI; among others.
The vessels, which mark the first two in a series of four ships of the same design, were dubbed HL ECO and HL GREEN. As the names suggest, both vessels boast high-levels of eco-friendliness.
With a length of 292 m, a breadth of 45 m, and a depth of 24.8 m, these HSHI-built ships will also become the first large LNG-fuelled vessels to travel an international route that covers Korea.
The ships are designed to achieve a 99% reduction in emissions of sulfur oxides (SOx) and particulate matter (PM), up to an 85% reduction in Nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, and a 30% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, compared to the levels of existing ships.
Notably, the fuel tanks and hulls are constructed entirely of domestically produced steel.
The vessels’ LNG fuel tanks each have a storage capacity of 1600 m3, the world's largest capacity available for a Type C tank.
Each ship is equipped with two of these LNG fuel tanks, which can provide enough energy to heat 3300 homes for an entire year. The tanks are composed of 9% nickel steel, which exhibits excellent fracture toughness even at cryogenic temperatures required for LNG storage.
For stable material supplies and market expansion, HSHI and POSCO worked closely together and succeeded in applying domestically produced 9% nickel steel to ships, which had been traditionally applied only to land-based LNG storage facilities at home, by enhancing the quality of the material to meet the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) tightening standards.
In most cases until now, the integrated automation system (IAS), often dubbed ‘the brain of a ship’, has been imported. From the third ship in this series, however, a Hyundai integrated automation CONtrol system (HiCON) will be adopted.
Over the period of 2018 and 2019, H-Line Shipping has requested that HSHI construct a total of four ships of the same design to respond to the IMO 2020 regulation requirements.
With HL ECO and HL GREEN scheduled for delivery by the end of this month and the other two by end-March 2022, each of the four vessels will make about 10 round trips a year between Korea and Australia.
“We have built the largest number and varieties of ships operating on LNG among the Korean shipyards,” said Kim Hyung Kwan, CEO of HSHI. “Building on these pioneering successes, we will strive to provide a clear reason for more shipowners to opt for LNG-fuelled ships as a measure to meet the IMO 2020 regulation requirements.”