MAN marks first conversion of boxship to LNG

The following is the text of a news release from MAN Diesel & Turbo:

(HAMBURG, Germany) — At a recent event at the Hamburg offices of MAN Diesel & Turbo, Dr. Uwe Lauber, company CEO, presented Gerd Wessels, managing owner of Wessels Reederei, with a takeover certificate marking the formal conclusion of the Wes Amelie liquefied natural gas (LNG) conversion project.

“This pioneering project marks a milestone in the European container feeder market, and MAN has impressively proven that existing engines can be converted to LNG operation with a tremendous effect on exhaust emissions and the environment,” Wessels said.

The project involved the retrofitting of the 1,036-TEU feeder containership’s MAN 8L48/60B main engine to a multi-fuel, four-stroke MAN 51/60DF unit that enables dual-fuel operation – the first such conversion of its type.

Christian Hoepfner, general manager of Wessels Reederei, said, “Wes Amelie operates in the highly regulated Nordic and Baltic seas. Since they are both within Emission Control Areas, the ship needs to meet the highest environmental standards and strictest limits for emissions. By converting to a low emission fuel, we are safeguarding the future of this containership as well as our own competitiveness in the market.”

The dual-fuel conversion has enabled Wes Amelie to significantly reduce its SOx emissions by 99 percent, NOx by approximately 90 percent, and CO2 by up to 20 percent. The vessel now meets both the Tier II and Tier III emission requirements set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Works were carried out at German Dry Docks in Bremerhaven in cooperation with gas specialist TGE Marine Engineering, which provided tank and LNG components. Bureau Veritas, the international classification society based in France, classed the conversion.

Wessels and MAN Diesel & Turbo originally signed the retrofit contract at the Europort exhibition for maritime technology in November 2015. Wes Amelie was constructed in 2011 and has already re-entered service on its usual route between the North and Baltic seas.

By Professional Mariner Staff