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BG reveals Blue Amazon project

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LNG Industry,

BG Group has revealed that it is working on an innovative new project to optimise LNG ship hull forms, named Blue Amazon.

The project is rethinking the design of LNG carriers from scratch to develop a low-resistance hull form. The project team are not restricted to following the industry-standard shape and arrangement of the ship’s LNG cargo tanks.

“The idea was to achieve the highest level of efficiency by trying to improve upon the best designs currently being built at the shipyards that BG partners with,” said Michael Davison, BG Group’s Project Development Manager for ship design and construction. “Our task was to try and independently create a new, highly efficient hull form and general arrangement for an LNG ship.”

Over 18 months, the Blue Amazon project team ran many iterations of computer modelling, testing, and improvements to develop the best design. The team used software specially created for the purpose by partner HydrOcean based on an advanced computation fluid dynamics process (known as RANSE) which can simulate complex turbulent flow conditions in various operating environments.

The computer-generated ship design is a visibly different ship shape, notably at the bow.

The project team then built a scale model and tested it at facilities at Instituto de Pesquisas Tecnológicas in São Paulo in Brazil. The team modelled sailing in three speeds, two LNG loading conditions, and various wave conditions.

Fuel savings

According to BG, the final vessel design is expected to require less propulsion energy than the current designs, saving fuel and corresponding emissions by 3 - 5%.

Davison said: “Over a year, a fleet of such ships would be saving approximately 32 000 t of LNG fuel.”

The Blue Amazon team is now refining the design as it moves into the final stage of optimisation. The final design is expected to emerge in March 2016. BG said that it looks forward to industrialising the design thereafter for the next wave of ship-building orders.

BG Technology Group in Brazil facilitated the project, which was carried out in collaboration with Bureau Veritas (BV); BV’s technology partner HydrOcean; GTT; Instituto de Pesquisas Tecnológicas (São Paulo) and Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro.

Edited from press release by

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