South Korea has started building a small liquefied natural gas bunkering vessel as part of a project backed by the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries.
A steel-cutting ceremony to mark the construction of the 500 cubic meter capacity LNG bunkering barge for coastal use was held on May 6, the ministry said in a statement.
This will be a first for South Korea as the vessel features only local technology.
The vessel, that will also feature LNG-powered propulsion is slated for delivery in 2021.
It should start LNG bunkering operations in 2023 after one year of sea trials.
The LNG bunkering barge will be able to supply more than five coastal vessels on a single charge, according to the ministry.
To remind, Korean Register granted approval in principle to South Korea’s Trans Gas Solution last year for their 500-cbm LNG bunkering barge design.
The project is a part of a new coastal LNG bunkering system being developed in South Korea to serve LNG-fuelled ships.
The Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries is funding the development while the project is led by the Korea Research Institute of Ships & Ocean Engineering (KRISO).
Besides KRIS0, project participants include steel-maker POSCO, shipbuilder EK Heavy Industries, pressure vessel builder Mytec and LNG fuelling station developer Valmax.
Trans Gas Solution will oversee the development of the control system of the vessel including the cargo handling system.