Hudong-Zhonghua develops giant LNG carrier

Chinese shipbuilder Hudong-Zhonghua has received approvals in principle from classification societies for what it says is the world’s largest LNG carrier.

CSSC’s Hudong-Zhonghua received AiP certificates for the 271,000-cbm LNG carrier design from ABS, Lloyd’s Register (LR), Bureau Veritas (BV), and DNV during the first day of the Gastech conference in Singapore.

According to Hudong-Zhonghua, the LNG carrier is 344 meters long, 53.6 meters wide, and has a design draft of 12 meters.

It features dual-fuel propulsion, a reliquefaction system, an air lubrication system, and GTT’s NO96 Super+ containment tech. The vessel has five storage tanks.

Despite its size, the vessel would be able to dock at more than 70 LNG terminals along the main trade route, the shipbuilder said.

Currently, the world’s largest LNG carriers are Qatar’s Q-Max vessels that are 345 meters long and have a capacity of 266,000 cbm.

These new carriers could also serve QatarEnergy’s expansion projects.

QatarEnergy is working on two giant LNG production projects and concluded construction contracts and long-term time charter agreements for 60 LNG carriers last year with more to come this year.

Besides Korean yards, Hudong-Zhonghua is also building some of these 174,000-cbm vessels under this giant shipbuilding program.

Improved safety and reliability

ABS said in a separate statement that the new LNG carrier design features selective catalytic reduction (SCR) that should reduce its nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, which will help the vessel comply with IMO Tier III controls even when in diesel mode.

The classification society also said that this newly designed LNG tank has an enhanced cargo containment system together with a real-time sloshing monitoring systems, while the vessel also has a hull stress monitoring and an anti-collision system, features not normally found on LNG carriers.

Hudong-Zhonghua designed all of these measures to improve the safety and reliability of the vessel, ABS said.

With the AIPs secured, the vessel design now enters additional design and analysis work before being presented to potential owners, ABS said.

Nearly 50 LNG carriers on order

Hudong-Zhonghua is the largest LNG carrier shipbuilder in China.

According to Hudong-Zhonghua, it currently has nearly 50 LNG carriers on order with deliveries scheduled until 2028.

The shipbuilder and French LNG containment giant GTT recently also developed a new 174,000-cbm LNG carrier design with three storage tanks.

ABS, LR, DNV, and BV also issued AIP certificates to the shipbuilder and GTT for the three-tank carrier.

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