First dual-fuel newbuild with mechanical drive

The Wartsila 50DF engine will power a new LNG carrier for use in the European ECAs, in readiness for IMO Tier III and the 2015 0.1% fuel sulphur cap The Wartsila 50DF engine will power a new LNG carrier for use in the European ECAs, in readiness for IMO Tier III and the 2015 0.1% fuel sulphur cap
Industry Database

An LNG carrier, soon to be delivered from the Meyer Werft yard in Germany, is notable for being the first newbuild gas-fuelled ship with mechanical drive to the propeller – previous such installations have all been part of a diesel-electric plant.

The propulsion package for the ship, which is scheduled for delivery to Rotterdam-based gas tanker company Anthony Veder, is being supplied by Wärtsilä. According to Wärtsilä, the dual-fuel technology of the engines and the capability to run on LNG is important for this vessel, which will mainly operate in protected ECA zones. The company claims that the dual fuel mechanical drive package both provides propulsion efficiency and saves space.

The scope of supply for the 15,600m³ capacity newbuild includes a Wärtsilä 50DF dual-fuel main engine, two 20DF dual-fuel auxiliaries, a reduction gearbox and a CP propeller. The engines will run most of the time on LNG, for environmental reasons, but have the capability of being switched to diesel fuel if and when required.

The contract for the vessel was signed in summer 2011. “Throughout the negotiations there has been very close co-operation between the ship’s owners, Anthony Veder, the Meyer Werft shipyard and Wärtsilä. The owners specifically wanted both the main and auxiliary engines to have dual-fuel capability. We are naturally extremely pleased to have been awarded this contract. The fact that this new LNG carrier will be operated mainly on gas makes it extremely environmentally sustainable. Compared to normal marine diesel fuel, gas operation virtually eliminates SOx emissions, has notably lower CO2 emissions, and it enables compliance with the IMO Tier III NOx regulations,” says Lars Anderson, vice president merchant, Wärtsilä Ship Power.

Anthony Veder has considerable experience with Wärtsilä machinery, and this will be the seventh vessel in the company’s fleet to be powered by Wärtsilä engines. The ship will mainly operate in protected ECA zones like the North Sea and Baltic Sea, therefore Wärtsilä believes that the DF technology and the capability to run on LNG is specifically applicable to environmentally-sound and legislation-compliant operation.

The order continues the long and successful relationship between Wärtsilä and the Meyer Werft yard. Wärtsilä hopes that the close cooperation in developing this LNG-powered vessel will, through common experience gained, result in other dual-fuel applications such as cruise ships and ferries.

“We are very pleased with these dual-fuel engines making this vessel one of the cleanest vessels in the industry. This is again a unique design since we are taking, in this project, a next step by having the dual-fuel engine mechanically driving the propeller, reducing the size of the propulsion system. We are pleased to see that Wärtsilä is taking LNG fuelled engines very seriously offering a full package,” says Edgar van Oers, fleet director Anthony Veder.

Wärtsilä points out that its dual-fuel engines have recently passed a significant milestone, with some 5million running hours clocked up in both land-based and marine applications.

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