Denmark: Engine and Machinery Division of HHI to Build MAN Diesel & Turbo’s Gas Engine
In separate announcements at MAN Diesel & Turbo’s second ME-GI test demonstration for customers in Copenhagen on 6 March, HHI-EMD – the Engine and Machinery Division of Hyundai Heavy Industries – and Mitsui Engineering and Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. stated that they intend to build prototypes of MAN Diesel & Turbo’s gas engine. The announcements effectively mean that the ME-GI has edged even closer to commercial production.
Both companies intend to carry out full-scale demonstrations of the ME-GI principle based on the temporary conversion of existing production engines to ME-GI units. Accordingly, Hyundai intends to convert an 8S70ME-GI unit in November 2012, while Mitsui will convert a 6S70ME-GI unit in the second quarter of 2013.
MAN Diesel & Turbo sees the announcement of the demonstrations as stemming from customer requests to employ the ME-GI engine in new projects and states that production capability for the ME-GI is already available. Similarly, the company also reports that test beds and ancillary gas-supply systems will also be available in time for ME-GI delivery.
Ole Grøne, Senior Vice President Low-Speed Promotion & Sales, MAN Diesel & Turbo said: “We view this latest development in the ME-GI project as very positive. It is immensely encouraging that some of our biggest licensees, based in the greatest shipbuilding countries in the world, are showing such tangible interest in this gas engine. Over the years, MAN Diesel & Turbo has staged tests in Copenhagen with excellent results where we have improved efficiency and lowered pilot injection volumes, but these full-scale demonstrations mark the most significant milestone yet for the ME-GI.”
The ME-GI engine is a gas-injection, dual-fuel, low-speed diesel engine that, when acting as main propulsion in LNG carriers or any other type of merchant marine vessel, can burn gas or fuel-oil at any ratio, depending on the energy source available on board and dictated by relative cost and owner preference. Indeed, Mitsui reports adopting twin ME-GI engines as prime movers aboard its concept LNG carrier ‘Double Eco MAX’ in July 2011, a move that intends to realise a 30% reduction in fuel costs and CO2 emissions.
Shipbuilding Tribune Staff, March 9, 2012; Image:mandieselturbo