Repeat dual-fuel retrofits for Tote and Wessels

Dual-fuel conversions contract From left: Marcel Lodder (MAN Diesel & Turbo, project leader, upgrade & retrofits), Rainer Runde (Reederei Wessels, project leader), Stefan Eefting (MAN Diesel & Turbo, senior vice president, PrimeServ Augsburg), Thomas Spindler (MAN Diesel & Turbo, head of upgrade & retrofits), Gerd Wessels (Reederei Wessels, managing owner), and Christian Hoepfner (Reederei Wessels, general manager)

MAN Diesel & Turbo has secured multi-ship repeat retrofit business from containership operators in the US and Germany.

Operators Tote and Wessels have both signed up for more dual-fuel conversions. Wessels Reederei has signed a letter of intent with MAN regarding the conversion of three ships. The vessels are sisters to the Wes Amelie, a 1,036 teu feeder container ship with an MAN 8L48/60B main engine that was retrofitted to a multi-fuel, four-stroke MAN 51/60DF unit earlier in 2017. The retrofit was the first conversion of a boxship’s engines.

Stefan Eefting, senior vice president, MAN Diesel & Turbo and head of MAN PrimeServ Diesel in Augsburg, said: “The Wes Amelie project shows clearly that existing MAN engines can be converted to LNG operation with a tremendous effect on exhaust emissions and the environment. One of the key reasons the Wes Amelie was selected was its ‘multiplier effect’, that is, its many sister ships that would facilitate follow-up projects at reduced costs owing to the experiences gained from the first project.”

Meanwhile Tote subsidiary Tote Maritime Alaska has contracted after-sales division MAN PrimeServ to convert its Orca-class roro container vessels North Star and Midnight Sun to dual-fuel operation on LNG. The ships are currently powered by four MAN 58/64 engines and will be retrofitted to MAN 58/64 retrofit units. The contract, signed in April, covers the design, development and testing of a first-of-its-kind dual-fuel kit, which will serve as foundation for the largest LNG conversion in North America.

Tote ordered the world's first LNG-powered newbuild container ships, the Marlin-class Isla Bella and Perla del Caribe, launched in 2015 and both featuring single MAN B&W 8L70ME-GI engines.

Thomas Spindler, head of upgrades & retrofits, MAN PrimeServ Augsburg, explained: “To meet Tote’s requirements we have developed a solution based on our well-proven 51/60DF retrofit. Accordingly, the engineering approach to the 58/64 retrofit is very familiar to us, and this project represents a straightforward conversion procedure. Not only will the retrofitted engines meet all new emission standards; the new components they receive during conversion will significantly extend their working life.”

Peter Keller, executive vice president, Tote, added:. “We have been investigating and testing many options for shifting the fleet to LNG. The conversion of the existing engines is the most reliable and beneficial solution. This innovative solution that has been developed in partnership with MAN, will be an important milestone for the industry as we all prepare for the IMO sulphur cap in 2020.”

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