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NYK seals landmark shipbuilding contract guaranteeing propulsion in actual sea conditions

Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) has signed an agreement with major shipbuilder Japan Marine United Corporation (JMU) to introduce a new shipbuilding contract that guarantees propulsion performance for new boxships in actual sea conditions.

Shipbuilding contracts typically guarantee ship speed by confirming the relationship between ship speed and horsepower in calm sea conditions without waves. The propulsion performance in actual sea conditions in this case represents the relationship between speed and metric horsepower in the actual sea service. Mutual confirmation then occurs during sea trials that are conducted during construction.

However, calm voyages without wind and waves are rare during commercial voyages, and stormy weather conditions are often encountered.

By providing customers with well-performing vessels, we contribute to improving environmental consciousness throughout the supply chain

Therefore, it is generally the obligation of shipping companies to identify and procure ships that have good propulsion performance in actual weather conditions.

Recently, with the improvement of satellite communications at sea and the progress of IoT technology, it has become possible to efficiently collect a variety of useful data.

Under the new agreement hatched with Japan’s second largest shipbuilder, after a containership goes into service, NYK will collect necessary data for a certain period of time, verify the data, and confirm the degree of achievement of the guarantee. This performance guarantee will confirm the relationship between ship speed and horsepower under sea conditions that include wind and waves.

NYK and JMU plan to carry out similar work for other ship types soon with the shipowner saying today it is also looking at forging similar agreements with all its shipbuilding partners.

“By providing customers with well-performing vessels, we will also contribute to improving environmental consciousness throughout the supply chain,” NYK pointed out today.

NYK has invested more than most owners in technology to ensure it is able to analyse very carefully all performance data from its across its fleet.

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Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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