Imabari Shipbuilding has pursued a policy of developing alternative fuel designs within its product portfolio.
ClassNK granted an Approval in Principle (AiP) to Imabari Shipbuilding for its concept design of an LPG-fuelled 180,000dwt Capesize bulk carrier. The AiP is the first for an LPG-fuelled Capesize bulk carrier.
ClassNK’s AiP is based on its Guidelines for Ships Using Low-Flashpoint Fuels and its Rule Part GF which incorporates the IGF Code (the International Code of Safety for Ships using Gases or other Low-flashpoint Fuels) and the IMO MSC.391(95) resolution. Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co. Ltd collaborated in the development of the concept design.
The design features an ambient temperature high pressure LFSS, which eliminates the necessity for special consideration of boil off gas. The solution also “makes the ship’s operation easier”, Imabari noted. The Motorship notes that MAN ES’s LPG-fuelled MAN B&W ME-LGIP marine engine requires LPG to be supplied at 53 barg. The design also improves the cost effectiveness of the solution, as it eliminates requirements for cryogenic insulation and low temperature materials.
The design features an LPG tank installed in the aft area of the bridge, which would provide sufficient fuel for a round trip from Japan to Australia. The shipbuilder also noted that both the global availability of LPG as a marine fuel and bunkering infrastructure have improved recently.