Bureau Veritas unveils new FSRU rules

Classification society Bureau Veritas has unveiled a new rule for the classification of floating storage and regasification units (FSRUs) in response to industry demand. 

Demand for FSRU’s is growing as they are a fast, cost-effective route to meet growing demand for LNG as a clean and cost-competitive energy source, BV said on Monday.

The new BV rules, developed in close cooperation with FSRU stakeholders, enable the classification of all types of floating storage and regasification assets in a comprehensive and pragmatic manner.

The new rules set out technical requirements to address the technical and operational issues of FSRUs. These requirements span demand for units that may operate as a floating terminal for one or more decades to FSRUs that may be required for much shorter periods and whose operators may want the option of trading as an LNG carrier.

The rules address this range of needs offering two distinct class notations, the LNG carrier-FSRU notation, enabling gas trading in addition to FSRU terminal operations, and the FSRU notation dedicated to pure gas storage and regasification terminal operations and not intending to trade.

The LNG carrier-FSRU notation provides the possibility for exemptions from the traditional class survey regime – such as five-year dry-docking survey requirements – when the vessel is in use as an FSRU.

The FSRU notation provides full optimization for site conditions and a class survey regime as applicable to permanent units with continuous operation requirements. No dry-docking would be required and some exemptions from IGC Code requirements compared to typical LNG carriers are allowed. For example, no bottom damage stability requirements would be necessary having addressed specific operational circumstances.

Speaking of the new rules, Jean-François Segretain, marine technical director, Bureau Veritas, said, “these new rules take into account the specific technical, regulatory, operational and environmental requirements of FSRU stakeholders to provide a much higher level of confidence when making significant commercial decisions.”