Japanese owner NS United Kaiun Kaisha has placed an order at compatriot shipbuilder Tsuneishi Shipbuilding for a new LNG-fuelled coastal limestone carrier boosted by batteries. The ship will start operations in February 2024 and feature Japan’s first gas-only engine and 2.8 KW/h lithium-ion battery.
The 5,560 dwt vessel will be owned by NS United’s subsidiary Naiko and will be chartered by Nippon Steel Corporation and Nippon Steel Cement.
The new propulsion system will be delivered by Kawasaki Heavy Industries. The CO2 emission reduction of the 93.8 m long newbuild is said to be 23.56% compared to the conventional vessels of the same type. According to NS United, the exhaust gas of the gas-only engine contains almost no SOx, and NOx emission is far below the Tier III standards. The vessel will use the battery for the propulsion power and the onboard power during entering, leaving, and berthing ports.
The ship will replace Naiko’s limestone carrier Shimokita Maru, and sail on routes between Shiriyamisaki port in Aomori Prefecture and unloading port Muroran in Hokkaido.