MAN Energy Solutions (formerly MAN Diesel & Turbo) has secured an order to provide dual-fuel propulsion systems for two 2,525 TEU container ship newbuildings that Pasha Hawaii will operate on its US West Coast/Hawaii trade lane.
The propulsion system package for each ship will comprise a 7S80ME-GI Mk 9.5 two-stroke main engine, three MAN 6L35/44DF four-stroke gensets and a MAN Alpha FPP propeller system. The vessels will be constructed at the Keppel AmFELS yard in Brownsville, Texas to Keppel's proprietary design under a contract valued at US$400M.
Honolulu-based Pasha Hawaii currently operates six US Jones Act container ships on its Hawaii service, including four older, steam turbine-powered vessels acquired in the 2015 takeover of certain Horizon Lines assets. To replace some of the older tonnage, the 23-knot Keppel AmFELS newbuildings will be the first LNG-powered vessels operating between the US mainland and the 50th state.
Established in 1990, Keppel AmFELS is a wholly owned US subsidiary of Keppel Offshore & Marine (Keppel O&M), ensuring compliance with the Jones Act requirement that vessels carrying goods between US ports be built in the US. The yard is scheduled to complete the two Pasha Hawaii container ships in the first and third quarters of 2020.
MAN reports that 200 of its two-stroke, M-type, electronically controlled, gas-injection (ME-GI) main engines are now in service. The diesel-cycle, dual-fuel units, which rely on the injection of regasified LNG into the combustion chamber at high pressure, are utilised to power a wide range of ship types, including LNG carriers, container ships and bulk carriers.
The Pasha Hawaii contract also highlights the willingness of customers to opt for complete MAN propulsion system packages, beyond the main engine itself.
Doosan Engine in Korea will build the main engines for the Pasha Hawaii ships under license, and the fitting of exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) systems will enable the units to meet Tier III emission standards.
MANís Augsburg works will build the four-stroke auxiliary engines and for these units the use of selective catalytic reduction (SCR) systems will ensure Tier III compliance. Delivery of all the engines is scheduled for 2019.
Pasha Hawaii plans to operate the new vessels fully on LNG on entry into service.
The dual-fuel propulsion systems will help the shipowner meet the requirements of an ever-tightening regime governing ship atmospheric emissions.
Each of the dual-fuel newbuildings will be equipped with a pair of IMO Type C LNG bunker tanks positioned on the main deck aft of the accommodation superstructure. Although LNG fuel capacities have yet to be revealed, it is expected that each ship will require about 3,000 m3 of tankage for a roundtrip to the islands.
Such a volume is suited to ship-to-ship transfers of fuel from an LNG bunker vessel. No US West Coast port plans have been announced as yet for such a vessel, but no doubt work is underway on providing a suitable bunkering solution for the Pasha Hawaii ships.