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Hanwha Ocean Launches Partnership Competing in Design Race for LCO2 Carrier

LCO2 design
Hanwha Ocean looks to enter the efforts to develop designs for the emerging LCO2 carrier market (Hanwha)

Published Sep 22, 2023 9:03 PM by The Maritime Executive

Hanwha Ocean, the recapitalized former Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) in South Korea, announced a new partnership to design and commercialize a CO2 carrier. It is the latest step in the new owners of the shipyard’s efforts to reinvigorate the shipbuilding business and invest in new technologies to enhance the competitiveness of the yard.

Last year when the Korean banks announced they were putting the former DSME up for sale they cited the need to invest in new technologies as one of the reasons. The South Korean government is placing a high priority on new green technologies and looking for the shipbuilding industry to develop leadership in the high-value segments of the market such as CO2 carriers.

Hanwha Ocean signed an agreement to work with Ecolog of Greece, ABS, and Babcock LGE of Scotland to develop a 40,000 cbm, large liquefied carbon dioxide (LCO2) carrier. It is viewed by many in the shipping industry as one of the most promising emerging market segments with several projects primarily in Korea and Japan working to complete the first commercial designs. It is expected that large CO2 carriers will play a vital role in the emerging market both providing transport and participating as an element in the plans for carbon capture and storage. South Korea looks to use its experience in building LNG and LPG carriers to develop the new designs.

This latest initiative in the segment will be led by Hanwha Ocean, which will oversee the comprehensive review of the ship's propulsion performance and the detailed design of the ship, including the cargo hold, which they highlight is the core of a liquefied carbon dioxide carrier. 

Joining the project is Ecolog, a company started by Greek shipping company Gaslog to specialize in the field of Carbon Capture Utilization & Storage (CCUS), including ship operations. Ecolog will contribute its global industry experience on the requirements and ship operations of gas carriers. Babcock LGE (Liquid Gas Equipment) specializes in cargo operation system development and will assist with design and development work related to cargo operation systems, including reliquefication devices. ABS will review the designs and provide expertise on the emerging global standards that will apply to LCO2 shipping.

Hanwha Ocean recently announced a paid-in capital increase of $1.5 billion and the group plans to focus the recapitalization to develop eco-friendly propulsion systems and related carriers. Like their peers at Hyundai and Samsung, they look to develop a leadership position in the eco-friendly ship market while securing sustainable competitiveness in the shipbuilding industry.