Leading classification society Bureau Veritas is classing the first ethane-powered ship. JS Ineos Insight is the first of a series of eight 27,500 cu m multi-gas Dragon-class vessels being built at Sinopacific, China, for Denmark’s Evergas. The vessel was named on July 14th and is configured for transport of ethane, LPG or LNG. It has options for ethane, LNG and conventional diesel power.
Martial Claudepierre, Business Development Manager, Bureau Veritas says, “The ability to burn ethane as well as LNG to power these unique vessels is a major step forward in the use of clean fuels. It means the vessels can use cargo gas during transits to provide a clean and clear commercial and environmental advantage. We have worked with Evergas and the Danish Maritime Authority to verify and ensure that the use of ethane is at least as safe as required by the IGC and will not impair the engine compliance with MARPOL Annex VI.”
The Dragon vessels were originally designed with a dual-fuel LNG/diesel power utilising two 1,000 cu m LNG tanks on deck powering two Wärtsilä 6L20 DF main engines with a total of 2,112 kW power and two shaft generators with total 3.600 kW power. The ability to also burn ethane was added to allow use of the cargo gas as the vessels are destined initially for transport of ethane from the US to the UK Ineos refineries.
Says Claudepierre, “Using ethane required extra engine room ventilation and additional gas detection, plus modifications to the main engines including a lower compression ratio, different turbocharger nozzles and de-rating of the engine to cope with the lower knocking resistance of ethane. But the gains in not carrying an additional fuel and in environmental performance from being able to burn clean fuel throughout the voyage are significant.”
Evergas is a Danish operating company established in 1883, wholly owned by Greenship Gas and JACCAR Holdings. It is a world leader in seaborne transportation of petrochemical gas with a focus on ethane and ethylene, operating a modern fleet of highly advanced petrochemical gas carriers. It has a large new-building programme of ethylene, ethane and LNG multi-gas carriers.