Breaking records: Another 24,000+TEU sea giant handed over to MSC
A 24,116 TEU ultra-large containership was named and delivered on Thursday, March 23, at China State Shipbuilding Corporation’s Changxing shipbuilding base.
The vessel bears the name MSC Celestino Maresca and it was built by Hudong Zhonghua Shipbuilding for China’s Bank of Communications Financial Leasing (BoCom) on behalf of the world’s largest container shipping company MSC.
This is the second ship of the same type delivered to MSC by the yard within two weeks, and it is the fifth 24,000 TEU-class vessel, the world’s largest, to be delivered in the past nine months.
Hudong Zhonghua said the achievement consolidates the yard’s top market position in the construction of ultra-large containerships.
MSC Celestino Maresca was independently designed by Hudong Zhonghua and the vessel will enter DNV class.
The colossal containership measures 399.99 meters in length, which is more than 60 meters longer than the current largest aircraft carrier in the world. Its molded width is 61.5 meters, and the deck area is equivalent to the size of 4 standard football fields. The ship can carry more than 240,000 tons of cargo, and can load 24,116 standard containers at a time.
The design adopts high-efficiency propellers and energy-saving devices that reduce fuel consumption and emission levels by an estimated 3-4 percent.
Furthermore, the yard said that the containership boasts advanced automated systems, such as a highly automated and integrated comprehensive bridge, and state-of-the-art fire extinguishing technology.
The shipbuilder optimized the ship’s large size to increase packing capacity and achieve the largest number of containers for a ship of its size. They used digital test chambers and lean management to improve production efficiency and achieve zero-defect delivery.
Hudong Zhonghua has filled more than 20 technical gaps and obtained 69 patents in the construction of the 24,000 TEU container ship.
In 2023, the world’s top eleven ocean carriers are set to add a whopping 89 large mainline container ships to their fleets, according to Alphaliner. MSC alone will account for almost half of these with 14 units due.
From mid-March to early April, MSC is expected to phase in no fewer than four 24,000 TEU newbuildings into the Asia – Europe network of the 2M partnership, including MSC Tessa, and MSC Irina which have already been delivered, followed by MSC Celestino Maresca and MSC Raya.
MSC Celestino Maresca will join her sister in the fleet of the ‘AE6 / Lion’ loop on 28 March in Ningbo, while the MSC Raya is scheduled to start her maiden voyage on 9 April in Shanghai for the ‘AE55 / Griffin’ service, Alphaliner said.
However, as explained, filling these new giant ships could be a tough challenge for Maersk and MSC as both 2M partners are still blanking sailings due to weak bookings and a general slowdown in global cargo demand, which already prompted numerous voyage cancellations.