HMM shrinks VLCC fleet

Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) is now left with just one very large crude carrier (VLCC) after selling two VLCCs in May.
South Korea’s second-biggest shipping company confirmed to IHS Maritime that 2005-built Universal Crown and Universal Queen have been sold to compatriot Sinokor Merchant Marine.
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Vard launches new innovation project

Singapore-listed offshore vessels designer and shipbuilder, Vard Holdings has launched a new innovation project in ship design.
The project, named ‘A step forward’, are design innovations developed with an emphasis on safety, user-friendliness, functionality, operability, cost optimisation, fuel
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Innovations Unveiled at Nor-Shipping

By Wendy Laursen 2015-06-02 19:38:44

Close to 1,000 maritime exhibitors showed off the breadth and diversity of the shipping industry at this week’s Nor-Shipping event. MarEx picked amongst the best to demonstrate the innovations unveiled so far.

New Container Feeder Vessel Designs

Wärtsilä launched a series of four new container feeder vessel designs that boost fuel efficiency while being compliant with all known current and future environmental regulations. The four ship designs, namely the WSD80-1500, WSD80-2400, WSD80-4000 and WSD84-2400, feature exceptionally low and best-in-class fuel consumption. Each design is available in three versions; “conventional” using HFO as fuel, “environmental” using HFO with exhaust cleaning scrubber systems, and “clean” with dual-fuel capability and running mainly on LNG.

Efficient 4-Stroke

The recently launched Wärtsilä 31 engine has achieved a Guinness World Records title for the most efficient 4-stroke diesel engine. This achievement was verified on May 26, 2015, and the listing is based on the Wärtsilä 31 engine’s highest fuel efficiency levels, with its diesel fuel consumption being as low as 165 g/kWh. This is far lower than any other 4-stroke diesel engine currently available on the market.

The Wärtsilä 31 engine is designed to serve various types of vessels in the offshore, cruise and ferry, and other marine segments where the power range requirement is from 4.2 to 9.8 MW. The engine can be operated using a range of different fuels, and comes in three alternative versions; Diesel, Dual-Fuel (DF) and Spark-Ignited Gas (SG). The multi-fuel capabilities that the Wärtsilä 31 brings to the market extend the possibilities for operators to utilise different qualities of fuels, from very light to very heavy diesel, and a range of different qualities of gas.

Ballast Water Treatment from Damen

Damen has recently launched two new ballast water treatment solutions onto the market, Damen LoFlo and Damen BalCon. Speaking of the new containerised ballast water treatment system, BalCon, Gert Jan Oude Egberink, Manager of Ballast Water Treatment at Damen, explains: “The unique point about this is that pre-fabrication and testing can be carried out onshore, before installation. That way, when a vessel comes to the yard for repair or survey, the system will be ready to go. It’s simply a case of ‘plug and play’ – connecting the treatment system and then business as usual, with the absolute minimum of downtime for the vessel.” BalCon covers a wide range of capacity requirements from 100m3 up to 750m3 per hour. BalCon is designed to use minimal space, with all equipment contained within a single TEU.

This is especially useful when BalCon is to be installed on a container vessel, as the system is purpose-built to fit within the cargo hold. BalCon is also well-suited to tanker vessels, where the container is installed as a deckhouse. Not only does Damen offer BalCon in an optional explosion proof form for tanker usage, but there is also an option of a booster pump.

Damen LoFlo, powered by BioSea, is designed as a solution for vessels requiring a lower capacity treatment system. Currently, most offerings commence with a capacity to process 100m3 per hour, leading to an unnecessarily high energy consumption and bigger footprint. LoFlo is available with either 30m3 or 60m3 capacity, significantly reducing footprint and energy usage. The system is fitted, in a compact arrangement, to a skid for easy and efficient installation on board the vessel. It can also be installed as a modular version.

Container Ship SkyBench Design

Classification society DNV GL presented Hyundai Heavy Industries with an Approval in Principle certificate for its SkyBench concept designed to increase the cargo capacity of large container vessels. The bridge and upper three decks of a “twin island” design container would be constructed as a separate sliding block, mounted on rails and able to move over the length of two 40ft container bays. In combination with a resizing and relocation of fuel tanks and the utilization of the void spaces beneath the accommodation block in a traditional design, this allows the addition of two extra 20ft container bays. The resulting cargo increase amounts to 270 TEU on a 17-row wide 10,000 TEU ship, 450 TEU on a 23-row wide 19,000 TEU ship and 350 TEU on a 20-row wide 14,000 TEU vessel.

Dry Scrubber

The first two ships equipped with dry scrubbers for exhaust gas cleaning have now been successfully operating on the Baltic and North Seas since early 2015. The dry scrubbers supplied by Envairtec were installed on board Reederei Rörd Braren’s two multipurpose vessels in January and February. The dry scrubber was certified by DNV GL in the beginning of May.

In dry scrubber, the sulphur oxides in the exhaust gases are absorbed by granules of hydrated lime in a reactor. The technology is emission-free, as the process does not generate washing waters that are discharged into the sea. Thanks to the relatively simple structure of the dry scrubber, its energy demand is significantly lower in comparison to other scrubbers. When operating in SECA, the return on investment is within one to two years. Nordkalk offers a turnkey absorbent supply service for vessels equipped with dry scrubbers.

Multi-Boat Handler

Vestdavit has designed a multiple-boat handling system which will make boat handling safer and simpler in the hangars and mission bays of warships, seismic craft and expedition yachts. MissionEase works on a system of hydraulic cradles which moves boats safely from stowage positions to maintenance, preparation or launch areas of the mission bay. It links seamlessly with dual or single-point davits to deploy or recover boats in high seas from either side of the vessel.

Communications

Marlink has unveiled a new approach to vessel communication services. Designed for users of Marlink’s customised Sealink VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) services, the new SMARTconnect hybrid solution seamlessly combines multiple communication carriers to provide the best available link based on pre-defined parameters set and managed by the customer. With a service delivery independent of specific carriers, cost can be reduced and greater flexibility and control provided for the customer.

SMARTconnect integrates Ku-, Ka-, C- and L-band satcom services with 3G/4G LTE, Wi-Fi and Tampnet LTE to provide one unified link for the shipowner. Further carriers or new technologies can be easily added to the solution. For example, the recent agreement between Marlink and the North Sea focused LTE provider Tampnet will ensure that the multi-carrier approach of the new hybrid solution can better support the large customer base of Marlink in the North Sea.

Electronic Logbooks

K-Log, Kongsberg Maritime’s new line of Electronic Logbooks, has been launched at Nor-Shipping. The K-Log portfolio currently includes five user-friendly Electronic Logbooks designed to reduce the time that masters and officers spend on mandatory reporting by streamlining data collection and delivery, meeting the requirements of IMO, Marpol, SOLAS and 11 flag states.

K-Log is designed to replace traditional paper logbooks by collecting data and information into a single data storage platform, either manually or automatically. The system supports event based recording of data related to navigation, engine, garbage handling, port calls and other operational activities, within the five currently available logbooks: Engine, Deck, Oil Record Book 1, Radio and Garbage. Kongsberg Maritime will soon add Dynamic Positioning, Operational and Official Electronic Logbooks to the system, with more planned for the future.

A key aspect of K-Log’s design is that all Electronic Logbooks provide a high degree of recognition from traditional paper logbooks, ensuring that users are already familiar with the layout. This makes the interface easy to learn and interact with, which along with simplified reporting routines and automatic collection of data, helps to reduce workload for officers on watch, so they can focus on safe and efficient vessel operations. Additionally, with greater automation, K-Log improves the quality of logbook entries by minimising the opportunity for human error. An on shore version of K-Log can also be included, making signed logbook pages available for authorized personnel.

K-Log is a highly adaptable software platform that can be customised to fit specific vessels or fleets, taking into account individual requirements of event set up and structure. It features customisable shortcuts to events and certain events can be recorded at specific times or in a sequence. The customer can define these rules under proposed events. Additionally, some events are recorded in multiple logbooks, reducing workload even further, i.e., an event recorded in the Deck Logbook can be sent to the Engine Logbook as a pre-filled suggested event. The officer responsible for the Engine Logbook only has to confirm before it is stored as an entry.

Navigation

Kongsberg Maritime unveiled a new navigation portfolio that complements its existing K-Bridge Integrated Navigation System (INS). K-Nav is a new navigation product family tailored for the SOLAS market and meeting all mandatory requirements from respective flag states. In parallel to the launch of K-Nav, Kongsberg Maritime is also introducing upgrades to K-Bridge INS, which is designed for vessels with demanding navigation and manoeuvring needs.

K-Nav Radar, which is based on Kongsberg Maritime’s unique networked radar technology, is a key aspect of the new K-Nav portfolio. The radar display unit is a type approved chart radar/ARPA where approved nautical charts can be displayed as underlay to the radar video. Raw data from the antenna is processed in the unit, correlating tracked radar targets and targets from the AIS. Local filtering of the raw data allows the same radar to be viewed at multiple stations, applying individual filter settings.

Other key building blocks within the K-Nav family include the type approved K-Nav ECDIS, which can optionally be integrated with the K-Nav Planning station, a ‘back-office’ system primarily designed for chart maintenance and voyage planning. For vessel control, the K-Nav Autopilot is an adaptive heading control system providing optimal steering under all condition, including both economy and precision mode. The autopilot user interface is through a dedicated operator unit connected to a controller cabinet, which is based on the Kongsberg System Technology controller solution.

Antenna

Shakespeare has launched the latest addition to its Galaxy range. The JellyFish (JF-3) is a three-way omni-directional antenna that integrates enhanced LTE (2G, 3G and 4G) GPS and Wi-Fi into a single, compact unit, suitable for installations on vessels of all sizes.

Designed and built to the same high quality control standards demanded of Shakespeare’s VHF and AIS antennas for government and naval users, the Jellyfish is an IP67 waterproof antenna designed for communication in harsh environment commercial applications. The omni-directional capabilities allow it to send and receive cellular signals equally well in all directions ensuring high network availability, thus reliable communication service.

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U.S. Faces Ship Shortage for LNG Exports

By Reuters 2015-06-02 18:30:45

The expected boom in liquefied natural gas exports from the United States risks being hampered by a lack of vessels to handle the trade, the head of the U.S. coast guard told shipping industry executives on Tuesday.

The LNG tanker market, currently suffering from oversupply due to weak demand for natural gas, could thus in a few years face a shortage of capacity, Paul Zukunft told the Nor-Shipping conference.

Several large projects are under construction on the U.S. Gulf coast, including Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass, due to come on stream later this year, and Sempra Energy’s Cameron LNG, set for completion in 2018.

“Right now we have one of the largest LNG facilities in the world being built in Louisiana,” Zukunft said, referring to the Cameron plant. “In the next three to four years there are not enough gas ships in the world that can accommodate that growth.”

Cameron LNG received approval from the U.S. Energy Department in January for exports of up to 12 million tons of LNG per year.

“We sit on 20 percent of the world’s LNG, so the question is how do we get this commodity into the market place and how do we leverage it for our shipping industry,” Zukunft said, adding that the expansion of the Panama Canal, set to finish in 2016, will help.

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