Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries (HSHI) successfully constructed the world’s first LNG-fueled large bulk carriers. HSHI held a naming ceremony for two 180,000-ton bulk carriers operating on LNG last Friday, December 11, which was attended by Chung Sye-kyun, Korea’s Prime Minister; Kim Yung-rok, Governor of Jeollanamdo Province; Seo Myung-deuk, CEO of H-Line Shipping; Chang In-Hwa, President of POSCO; Ka Sam-hyun, Co-CEO of Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering (KSOE); and Kim Hyung Kwan, CEO of HSHI, among others.
The vessels, which mark the first two in a series of four ships of the same design, were dubbed “HL ECO” and “HL GREEN,” respectively, which boast great eco-friendliness as the names suggest.
With a length of 292m, a breadth of 45m, and a depth of 24.8m, these HSHI-built ships will also become the first large LNG-fueled vessels to travel an international route that covers Korea.
The ships are designed to achieve a 99% reduction in emissions of Sulphur oxides (SOx) and particulate matter (PM), respectively, up to 85% in Nitrogen oxides (NOx), and 30% in greenhouse gas (GHG), compared to the levels of the existing ships.
Notably, the fuel tanks and hulls are constructed entirely of domestically produced steel.
In particular, the LNG fuel tanks boast a 1,600㎥ storage capacity each, the world’s largest capacity available for a Type C tank.
Each ship is equipped with two of these LNG fuel tanks, which can provide enough energy to heat 3,300 homes for an entire year. The tanks are composed of 9% nickel steel, which exhibits excellent fracture toughness even at cryogenic temperatures required for LNG storage.
For stable material supplies and market expansion, HSHI and POSCO worked closely together and succeeded in applying domestically produced 9% nickel steel to ships, which had been traditionally applied only to land-based LNG storage facilities at home, by enhancing the quality of the material to meet the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) tightening standards.
In most cases until now, the integrated automation system (IAS), often dubbed “the brain of a ship,” has been imported. From the third ship in this series, however, HiCON (Hyundai integrated automation CONtrol system) will be adopted to replace foreign-made systems.
Over the period of 2018 and 2019, H-Line Shipping has requested HSHI to construct a total of four ships of the same design to respond to the IMO 2020 regulation requirements.
With HL ECO and HL GREEN scheduled for delivery by the end of this month and the other two by end-March 2022, each of the four vessels will make about 10 round trips a year between Korea and Australia.
“We have built the largest number and varieties of ships operating on LNG among the Korean shipyards,” said Kim Hyung Kwan, CEO of HSHI. “Building on these pioneering successes, we will strive to provide a clear reason for more shipowners to opt for LNG-fueled ships as a measure to meet the IMO 2020 regulation requirements.”