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HHI Received AiP for Ammonia Carrier with Ammonia Fuel Propulsion

design approval for ammonia carrier using ammonia propulsion
Designs for an ammonia carrier fueled by ammonia (BV)

Published Sep 21, 2021 7:36 PM by The Maritime Executive

In the race to develop commercial ammonia technology for the shipping industry, South Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries and Korea Shipbuilding & Offshore Engineering Co. jointly received the first Approval in Principle for the design of an ammonia carrier with ammonia-fueled propulsion. The design was developed in partnership with Bureau Veritas, which issued the AiP, and is part of South Korea’s strategy to build leadership in the high value segments of shipbuilding.

According to Bureau Veritas, the South Korean design was developed to ensure its compatibility with the existing infrastructure for ammonia, while also reflecting the market’s demand for very large gas carriers (VLGCs). It builds on HHI’s experience with the transport of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). 

The vessel will be 745 feet long with a 120-foot beam and a maximum underwater depth of 77.5 feet. HHI said it was using similar dimensions to its current 91K VLGC design. The ammonia carrier will be equipped with four prismatic-type cargo tanks with a total capacity of 91,000 cubic meters. No details were announced on the machinery plans for the vessel.

Matthieu de Tugny, President Marine & Offshore at Bureau Veritas, said the issuing of the AiP demonstrates that this is a feasible solution that will support the effort to achieve net zero carbon shipping. “We are delighted about the positive outcome of this partnership, and we are excited to see this cooperation paving the way for further successes for both HHI and BV in technology development for newbuild market."

This design was optimized for the safe and efficient carriage of ammonia as a single cargo, thereby maximizing competitiveness for shipowners, both in terms of CAPEX and OPEX. HHI said that special attention had been given to ensuring the safety of the vessel and crew and managing the toxicity of ammonia. 

Won Ho Joo, Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Technical Officer of Hyundai Heavy Industries, said that they believe this design will help HHI secure a leading position as a provider of ammonia propulsion technologies, as interest in ammonia as a marine fuel continues to grow worldwide.

Earlier this month, the South Korean government unveiled its new “K-Ship” program designed to build and maintain the country’s leadership as the shipbuilder of premium ships. President Moon Jae-in pledged to support the shipbuilding industry to ensure that it is the overwhelming leader focused on the construction of new eco-friendly ships and automated technologies. Ammonia is among the technologies South Korea is targeting for the future of the shipping industry.