Forward Ships Wins Patent in South Korea

Forward Ships, established as part of the Project Forward that promotes the adoption of LNG as fuel, has won its first official patent right from South Korea.

Image Courtesy: Arista

The project, led by Athens-Based Arista Shipping, advocates that with LNG as fuel, an advanced hull design, and highly efficient propulsion machinery, it will be possible to meet the IMO’s target for a 40 percent reduction in carbon intensity by 2030.

The patent relates to Forward Ships’ innovative machinery arrangement, which consists of two low-pressure, four-stroke Wärtsilä 31Dual Fuel main engines and two PTO/PTIs, coupled on one shaft that drives a CPP propeller.

“This arrangement doubles the propulsion redundancy, quadruples the power-generating redundancy, and provides safe return to port, setting a new standard and lowering operating expenses,” Foward Ships said.

“This arrangement allows for an improvement in the streamlining of the aft part, the percentage of which is not taken into account in the consumption tables. Further, the positioning of the engines above gearbox centreline allows for additional hull lines’ optimization.”

 “The efficient propulsion design concept for Forward Ships is based on a novel arrangement featuring just two highly efficient Wärtsilä 31DF engines without auxiliary gensets. The project is totally in line with Wärtsilä’s Smart Marine vision that foresees an era of concept solutions delivering optimal efficiency, safety, and environmental sustainability,” says Johnny Kackur, General Manager, Wärtsilä Marine Solutions.

The initiative has seen Forward Maritime, part of Arista Shipping Group, ink a letter of intent with the Chinese Jiangsu Yangzijiang Shipbuilding for the construction of up to twenty LNG-fueled Kamsaraxes set for delivery by 2023. The ships are designed to reduce the cost of transportation at sea and define a new standard of vessel for IMO’s 2020 emission rules and beyond. The vessel is fitted with an LNG tank positioned midships.

Related: LNG as Fuel Perfect Bridge until 2050

According to the results of model tests of the project’s concept vessel, the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI), a measure of carbon intesnsity which reflects the CO2 emissions per transport work, is well below the currently most stringent Phase III level, Forward Ships said. The Phase III level signifies a 30 percent reduction from the 2008 reference level and is applicable to ships built after 2025.

As explained, the advanced engine technology can also help meet further reduction in CO2 emissions per transport work of up to 70 percent, without lowering service speeds through the use of carbon neutral fuels mixed with LNG. Such carbon neutral fuels can be transported, stored, and consumed in a similar way to that of fossil LNG.

Through the advanced engine technology available today, LNG has a clearly superior well-to-wake emissions profile compared to liquid fuel. LNG appears not as a transition fuel, but the fuel of tomorrow and for many years to come,” says Antonis Trakakis, Technical Director at Arista and Chief Technology Officer of Forward Ships.

The concept vessel’s hull form has been optimized in cooperation with Finnish ship designer Deltamarin and classification society American Bureau of Shipping (ABS). Finish tech company Wärtsilä and the French LNG membrane containment system designer GTT are also involved in the project.