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Hapag-Lloyd orders first mega-container vessel retrofit to LNG

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LNG Industry,

MAN Energy Solutions has announced that it has signed a contract for the conversion of a 15 000 TEU container vessel to dual-fuel operation.

According to the statement, the MV SAJIR container vessel is owned by Hapag-Lloyd, and usually serves on a route between Asia and northern Europe via the Suez canal. MAN claims that the pilot project will involve the conversion of an existing heavy fuel oil (HFO) burning MAN B&W 9S90ME-C engine to a dual-fuel MAN B&W ME-GI (gas injection) prime mover, capable of operating on both HFO and LNG. The retrofit operation will be executed at the Chinese Hudong/HRDD shipyard, which specialises in ship repair and conversion.

Wayne Jones OBE – Chief Sales Officer and Member of the Executive Board, MAN Energy Solutions – said: “We are seeing great interest in this project from the industry as a whole. This is an excellent showcase for the conversion of a megacontainer vessel to LNG and the potential benefits for the market is huge. With this announcement, MAN Energy Solutions is once again at the forefront of technology with our ability to execute LNG conversions for both four-stroke and two-stroke engines.”

Richard von Berlepsch, Managing Director Fleet Management at Hapag-Lloyd, added: “By converting the SAJIR, we will be the first shipping company to retrofit a container ship of this size to LNG propulsion.

“With this unprecedented pilot, we hope to learn for the future and to pave the way for large ships to be retrofitted to use this alternative fuel.”

According to the statement, the Hapag-Lloyd pilot project is scheduled to take place next year, when the five-year old vessel will spend 90 days in dock. The DNV-GL approved gas-storage system will occupy an area equivalent to 350 containers, including the pipework between storage and engine.

Wayne Jones added: “MAN Energy Solutions’ strategy is to provide complete, fully integrated solutions. Accordingly, MAN Cryo will install an entire gas system to supply gas to the main, as well as to the auxiliary engines, including a MAN Energy Solutions 300 bar high pressure Pump Vaporizer System (PVU).”

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