NYK Line, JMU launch LNG-powered Newcastlemax

NYK president Tadaaki Naito. Credit: NYK Line
NYK president Tadaaki Naito. Credit: NYK Line

NYK Line and Japan Marine United (JMU) have unveiled a design for a 200,000 dwt liquefied natural gas- (LNG)-powered bulk carrier.

NYK Line, whose president is Tadaaki Naito, has been working with compatriot shipbuilders and JMU to design LNG-fuelled ships to comply with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO’s) stricter limits on emissions in 2020.

The Japanese shipping group plans to build vessels according to this design after securing new long-term timecharter contracts.

“The concept design was given approval, in principle, by ClassNK, and NYK and JMU can now begin negotiations with customers for large LNG-fuelled vessels,” said NYK.

Burning LNG can reduce emissions of carbon dioxide by about 30%, nitrogen oxides by about 80%, while there are nearly no emissions of sulphur oxide.

The IMO will cap the sulphur content of marine fuels at 0.5% from 2020. LNG is therefore seen as a suitable alternative to conventional heavy fuel oil.

The vessel is designed by NYK and JMU in a way that the configuration of the LNG fuel tank and the fuel supply system allows the ship to raise the volume of its cargo hold and cut fuel consumption, despite the weight of the additional equipment.

Regarding the ship design, NYK said, “Combining the greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the design together with LNG fuel, the ship will be able to lower its Energy Efficiency Design Index by about 40%, a reduction that had been considered difficult for a large bulk carrier to attain.”

The ship design can contribute to the IMO’s strategy of a 40% improvement in the global shipping industry’s fuel efficiency by 2030.

NYK Line recently issued USD93.5 million of green bonds to finance its efforts to go green.