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World’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to start trading

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World’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to start trading. Image: UECC
World’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to start trading. Image: UECC
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UECC has taken delivery of the world’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC that is set to provide significant gains in energy efficiency and emissions reduction as it enters service this year to boost the leading European shortsea ro-ro carrier’s bold effort to decarbonise its fleet.

The vessel, to be named Auto Advance, is the first in a series of three newbuild pure car and truck carriers (PCTC) – measuring 169 by 28 metres and with capacity for 3600 vehicles on 10 cargo decks – that are being delivered from China’s Jiangnan Shipyard. The remaining two sister vessels are scheduled for delivery in 2022.

“Having brought into operation the first-ever dual-fuel LNG PCTCs five years ago, UECC is now taking delivery of the first of three of the world’s first dual-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC to be built. This is another big step forward in eco-friendly ship operations that shows we walk the talk,” says UECC chief executive Glenn Edvardsen.

“This is also a technological milestone as the successful performance of the vessel in sea trials has vindicated our confidence in the viability of this innovative solution.”

UECC has taken the lead in the PCTC segment by developing the pioneering design, together with DNV and Jiangnan’s in-house ship designer Shanghai Merchant Ship Design & Research Institute, to incorporate proven technology in a new configuration geared to enhancing operational and environmental performance.

Technology puzzle

LNG battery hybrid technology, together with an optimised hull design for better fuel efficiency, will enable these newbuilds to exceed the IMO requirement to cut carbon intensity by 40% from 2008 levels within 2030.

Emissions of carbon dioxide will be reduced by around 25%, SOx and particulate matter by 90% and NOx by 85% from the use of LNG, while the newbuilds will also meet the IMO’s Tier 3 NOx emissions limitations for the North Sea and Baltic Sea.

Dual-fuel engine technology has now been combined with an energy storage system (ESS), supplied by Finland’s WE Tech, incorporating a battery package from Corvus Energy that will be charged by a permanent magnet, directly driven shaft generator or dual-fuelled generators.

The ESS, which will provide power to the main switchboard with a DC link for power distribution, will enable peak shaving for the main engine and auxiliaries to reduce fuel consumption and emissions, with a controllable pitch propeller, bulb rudder and dual-fuel boiler also part of the power system.

These vessels will require only two auxiliary dual-fuel gensets, in addition to the main engine, as the ESS and shaft generator provide a spinning reserve to eliminate the need for another genset that would normally be required.

Smart energy management

Battery capacity is based on detailed modelling of the vessels’ expected operational profile to economise on installation, with payback time for the ESS estimated at only five years, according to UECC’s head of ship management and newbuilding Jan Thore Foss.

The hybrid solution, which has gained DNV’s Battery Safety notation, will be steered by an intelligent energy management system, supplied by Kongsberg Maritime, that will serve as a control system for overall energy production and consumption – essentially the ‘energy brain’ of the vessel.

Batteries can be most efficiently charged while at sea using the shaft generator so that they are fully charged when entering port, enabling the vessel to manoeuvre in port using bow thrusters driven solely by battery power that can also supply the ship’s other energy needs while it is docked.

“This will effectively eliminate emissions while in port and these vessels are also equipped to connect to green power from shore that is becoming increasingly available in order to reduce harmful emissions of NOx, SOx and particulate matter,” Foss says.

Operational flexibility can deliver significant fuel efficiency gains and Foss believes this, combined with a low-emissions profile, will give the vessels an advantage in the European market as EU plans to include shipping in the Emissions Trading System are set to hike costs for pollutive vessels.

Fuel optionality

UECC’s energy and sustainability manager Daniel Gent says: “LNG is presently the most environment-friendly and widely available low-carbon fuel, with an estimated emissions reduction of around 25% compared with other fossil fuels.

“We are therefore taking advantage of the best available fuel solution now and combining this with hybrid technology to further cut emissions. But we are not locked into LNG and these dual-fuel engines are also ready to use alternative low-emission fuels such as biofuel, bio-LNG and synthetic LNG as these become commercially and technically viable.”

Edvardsen claims that UECC, jointly owned by green-focused players NYK and Wallenius Lines, is presently the only shipping company in its regional market segment that is investing in sustainable newbuilds.

“UECC has already achieved a substantial reduction in the carbon intensity of its fleet, but we aspire to do much more,” he concludes.

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Maritime

Port of Los Angeles launches first of its kind Cyber Resilience Center

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Port of Los Angeles launches first of its kind Cyber Resilience Center. Image: Pixabay
Port of Los Angeles launches first of its kind Cyber Resilience Center. Image: Pixabay
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The Port of Los Angeles has debuted its Cyber Resilience Center, a state-of-the-art port community cyber defense solution created to improve the cybersecurity readiness of the Port and enhance its threat-sharing and recovery capabilities among supply chain stakeholders. The CRC was designed through a collaborative process with participating stakeholders and will be operated by International Business Machines.

“We must take every precaution against potential cyber incidents, particularly those that could threaten or disrupt the flow of cargo,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “This new Cyber Resilience Center provides a new level of awareness for our stakeholders by providing enhanced intelligence, better collective knowledge sharing and heightened protection against cyber threats within our supply chain community.”

“The past year has proven the vital role that ports hold to our nation’s critical infrastructure, supply chains and economy, underscoring that it’s paramount we secure this ecosystem,” said Christopher McCurdy, General Manager, IBM Security Services. “The Port of Los Angeles is setting a new industry standard with a first-of-its-kind initiative to increase cyber readiness across the maritime community. With IBM’s cutting-edge technologies in cloud and AI fueling the CRC, we’re able to provide the maritime ecosystem with the threat insights necessary to stay ahead of cyber threats and improve response time.”

Envisioned as a “system of systems,” the CRC enables participating stakeholders to automatically share cyber threat indicators and potential defensive measures with each other. This collaborative approach centralizes threat information for the Port’s stakeholders and helps prevent cyber disruption of the supply chain. The platform serves as a hub for the Port to receive, analyze and share information among its stakeholders who handle cargo, such as terminal operators, shipping lines, truck, rail and others, among its cross-sector stakeholders who provide essential support services, and from external intelligence sources. The CRC is also available to participating stakeholders as an advisory resource to assist with recovery.

The first group of approximately 20 participating stakeholders are now using the new system and gaining access to IBM X-Force Threat Intelligence and more groups are expected to join every six months. As part of its operations, the CRC will be conducting tabletop exercises with participating stakeholders and providing them with annual cybersecurity training.

In 2014, the Port of Los Angeles set the maritime industry standard for cyber security when it established a Cyber Security Operations Center designed to help protect the Port’s internal networks. The newly-designed CRC builds upon that technology infrastructure by improving the quality, quantity and speed of cyber information sharing among Port stakeholders and leveraging the CRC’s security model to creating a more inclusive maritime community.

North America’s leading seaport by container volume and cargo value, the Port of Los Angeles facilitated $259 billion in trade during 2020. San Pedro Bay port complex operations and commerce facilitate one in nine jobs across the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura. The Port of Los Angeles has remained open with all terminals operational throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Maritime

Broad scope of Wartsila power solutions selected for gas-fuelled ferry trio

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Broad scope of Wartsila power solutions selected for gas-fuelled ferry trio. Image: Wartsila
Broad scope of Wartsila power solutions selected for gas-fuelled ferry trio. Image: Wartsila
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Three new LNG-fuelled Ro-Pax vessels being built for Swedish ferry operator Stena RoRo will feature a broad scope of Wartsila solutions. The ships are under construction at China Merchants Jinling Shipyard and will operate with Wartsila engines and propulsion machinery when delivered in 2024 and 2025. The order was booked with Wartsila in Q4 2021.

Having a single supplier of a large scope package provides multiple benefits in the form of system compatibility, and seamless interfacing during the procurement phase of the project. This notably lessens the risk of project delays.

“We are very familiar with Wartsila’s ability to supply reliable and highly efficient solutions in line with our operational and sustainability requirements. In particular, their experience and leading know-how in LNG technologies is especially important to us as we move to decarbonise our services,” says Per Westling, Managing Director, Stena RoRo.

“We are delighted to help Stena RoRo bring the latest new vessels in its E-Flexer series to market, and to work once again with Wartsila to ensure these vessels have highly efficient and environmentally sustainable propulsion,” said Ni Weisong, Vice General Manager, China Merchants Jinling (Weihai) Shipyard.

“We have earlier supplied a similar scope of solutions for Stena newbuild projects, and it is especially gratifying to receive this repeat order. The cooperation between our companies and with the shipyard has been excellent, and we look forward to another successful outcome,” says Roger Holm, President, Wartsila Marine Power.

The vessels, each around 200 metres long, are part of a series of E-Flexer class ferries ordered by Stena RoRo for European line service. For each ship Wartsila will supply Wartsila 46DF dual-fuel main engines, Wartsila 20DF dual-fuel auxiliary engines, two gearboxes, two controllable pitch propellers (CPP), the tunnel thrusters, and the fuel gas supply system.

The use of LNG as a marine fuel is viewed by Wartsila as being an important transitional solution in the drive towards decarbonising shipping. LNG bridges the gap between conventional diesel fuels and future zero-carbon alternatives yet to be widely available, a decarbonisation strategy fully supported by both Wartsila and Stena Line.

Wartsila is working closely with Stena RoRo to ensure that one of the vessels meets DNV’s Silent-E class notification. This recognises that underwater noise from the vessel is controlled to protect vulnerable environments and involves careful configuration and design of propulsion and onboard equipment to offer low noise while maintaining high efficiency.

Wartsila will also supply the ships with Nacos navigation and automation, as well as integrated control alarm and monitoring system MCS Platinum together with the performance monitoring system. The vessels will also feature Wartsila’s Smart Panoramic Edge Camera System, eliminating blind spots and creating a 360°, birds-eye view of the ships surroundings, offering a significant advantage when docking.

The equipment is scheduled for delivery to the yard commencing in Q4 2022.

Stena RoRo specialises in custom-built vessels, as well as standardised RoRo and RoPax vessels. The company leases about fifteen vessels to operators worldwide, both to other Stena companies and third parties. Stena RoRo specialises above all in applying its technical expertise to the design and production of new ships and the conversion of existing ships for delivering tailored transport solutions to its customers.

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Container Terminal

ICTSI continues to find logistics solutions, alternative; Cavite Gateway Terminal beefs up operations

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ICTSI continues to find logistics solutions, alternative; Cavite Gateway Terminal beefs up operations. Image: ICTSI
ICTSI continues to find logistics solutions, alternative; Cavite Gateway Terminal beefs up operations. Image: ICTSI
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International Container Terminal Services, Inc. continues to beef up operations of the Cavite Gateway Terminal in Tanza, Cavite as ICTSI continues its bid to find logistical solutions and alternatives for the country’s supply chain.

Christian R. Gonzalez, ICTSI executive vice president, says: “As the country begins to re-open the economy, we shall continue to support the country’s importers and exporters not only through enhancements in our operated terminals, but also through practical solutions and alternatives for our importers and exporters.”

One of these alternatives is the CGT, the country’s first dedicated container barge terminal, that optimizes the sea lanes of Manila Bay while providing alternate means of transporting containers from the Port of Manila to the CALABARZON area south of Manila and back.

ICTSI recently strengthened yard and wharf operations with the deployment of additional landside container handling equipment as well as directly contracted barge equipment. With an area of six hectares, the CGT has the capacity to handle 115,000 TEUs annually.

Enhancements at CGT also came at an opportune time with the temporary closure of the southbound portion of Roxas Boulevard. Says Mr. Gonzalez: “We support the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority’s (MMDA) call to look for other ways to transport containers, and we are happy to be able to offer an alternative through the services provided by CGT.”

Recently, the MMDA announced the temporary closure of the boulevard’s southbound lanes to give way to the Department of Public Works and Highways’ repair of a damaged box culvert in front of a pumping station in Pasay City, and civil works related to the Department of Transportation’s Light Rail Transit Line 1 Cavite Extension Project.

Roxas Boulevard is part of a cargo truck trade route connecting the Port of Manila to Southern Luzon. Close to 900 trucks and over 1,000 trailers daily travel the road’s southbound direction alone.

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