Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to build LNG carriers for Cameron Project

LNG tanker ship
Source: DollarPhotoClub

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) has received an order for two next-generation LNG carriers from Mitsui & Co., Ltd. The vessels are scheduled for completion and delivery in 2018 and 2019, respectively. They will be put into service for the Cameron LNG Project1 under way in the United States, an initiative in which Mitsui is participating. The event marks the first order placed to MHI for LNG carriers to transport shale gas.

The order for the two LNG carriers was received through MI LNG Company, Limited, a joint venture between MHI and Imabari Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. The vessels will be constructed at MHI’s Nagasaki Shipyard & Machinery Works. LNG carrying efficiency has been increased as the vessel width has been kept to a size enabling its passage through the newly expanding Panama Canal expected to go into service early in 2016.

The LNG carriers on order feature a hybrid propulsion system dubbed “STaGE” (Steam Turbine and Gas Engines), which as its name implies combines a steam turbine and engines that can be fired by gas. STaGE’s components consist of the “Ultra Steam Turbine plant” (UST), a highly efficient reheating steam type marine turbine developed independently by MHI, a dual-fuel diesel engine capable of operating on both gas and oil, and an electric propulsion motor. Plant efficiency has been substantially improved through the UST’s effective use of the engine’s waste heat, resulting in a propulsion system enabling high-efficiency navigation throughout a full range of speeds.

Demand for LNG as a fuel for generating power has been increasing not only in Japan but worldwide. Simultaneously, LNG produced in North America in tandem with America’s “Shale Gas Revolution” is projected to grab an expanding share of the global market going forward, a trend that is resulting in longer LNG transport distances.

Adapted from a press release.

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