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MSC Collaborates with Industry Leaders to Chart a Sustainable Course for Ammonia-Powered Containership
By Seaandcoast | 20/05/2023
Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) partners with Lloyd's Register, SDARI, and MAN Energy Solutions to develop a cutting-edge design for an ammonia-powered container ship, taking a significant step towards achieving zero-carbon emissions in the maritime industry.
In a groundbreaking move towards decarbonizing the shipping industry, Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), the world's largest container shipping company, has joined forces with renowned industry leaders Lloyd's Register (LR), Shanghai Merchant Ship Design & Research Institute (SDARI), and MAN Energy Solutions (MAN-ES) to spearhead the development of a revolutionary design for an ammonia-powered container ship. This collaborative effort aims to create a vessel that will propel MSC towards a sustainable future and help meet the emission reduction targets set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
The partnership was solidified through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that outlines the key objectives and responsibilities of each party involved. SDARI, with its expertise in ship design, will be entrusted with preparing the technical specifications and design documentation for the ammonia dual-fuel variant. LR, a renowned classification society, will play a crucial role in ensuring that the design adheres to the highest safety standards and rules governing the utilization of ammonia as a marine fuel. MAN-ES, a leading provider of maritime propulsion systems, will contribute its knowledge and data to optimize the engine design and develop efficient ammonia fuel supply and emission abatement systems.
The adoption of ammonia as a primary propulsion fuel holds immense promise for the maritime energy transition. Unlike traditional fuels, ammonia combustion emits no CO2, making it a genuinely zero-carbon alternative. Additionally, its stability and favorable energy-to-volume ratio open up opportunities for long-distance transportation, further cementing its potential as a sustainable marine fuel.
Nick Brown, CEO of Lloyd's Register, expressed his delight in being part of this landmark project, emphasizing the critical role of ammonia in achieving the maritime industry's emission reduction goals. He highlighted the importance of collaboration between ship operators, designers, class societies, and engine manufacturers in driving sustainable innovation.
Giuseppe Gargiulo, Head of Newbuilding at MSC, underscored the significance of this project in evaluating the viability and impact of zero-carbon fuels like ammonia on vessel operations. He emphasized MSC's commitment to proactive collaboration and its eagerness to explore alternative fuel options that can be safely adopted.
This ambitious endeavor comes at a time when MSC has already demonstrated its commitment to sustainability by placing orders for ten ammonia-ready liquefied natural gas (LNG) powered vessels. Designed by CIMC Ocean Engineering Design and Research Institute (CIMC ORIC), these vessels are expected to be delivered between 2025 and 2026. MSC's multi-pronged approach involves exploring various net-zero energy sources, such as synthetic LNG, green methanol, and ammonia, to propel its future fleet when these fuels become commercially available at scale.
The maritime industry is at a pivotal moment, and initiatives like the ammonia-powered container ship design project spearheaded by MSC and its partners are vital steps towards a greener and more sustainable future. The successful development and implementation of this cutting-edge technology will undoubtedly inspire other industry players to embrace innovative solutions that mitigate the environmental impact of maritime transport.