Industry firsts: MAN ES’ methanol-fuelled engines picked for CMES’ PCTCs

China Merchants Heavy Industry has ordered two MAN Energy Solutions (MAN ES) B&W 7S60ME liquid gas injection methanol (LGIM) engines in connection with the construction of two 9,300 ceu PCTCs the shipbuilder is constructing for China Merchants Energy Shipping (CMES).


The engines will feature MAN Energy Solutions’ proprietary exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system. Engine manufacturer, CSE, will construct the engines in China with respective vessel delivery set for 2025 and 2026. The order also contains an option for an additional four vessels.

According to MAN ES, the contract represents a number of firsts, including the first order globally for the S60ME-LGIM variant, the first methanol-fuelled engine for a PCTC, and the first Chinese-built methanol engine.

“Interest in using methanol in ocean-going vessels is at an all-time high, especially in the container vessel segment but also in the vehicle-transport sector whose main players are moving to expand capacity driven by very strong, Chinese car sales, and to renew their fleets in response to new emission regulations. Thus, with this order, CMES is simultaneously expanding its business and improving its sustainable profitability,” Bjarne Foldager, Head of Two-Stroke Business, MAN Energy Solutions, said.

Foldager also emphasized that even though liqufied natural gas (LNG) has been the most popular alternative fuel within the PCTC segment, CMES is one of the first movers to methanol.

The firm expects the usage of methanol as a future fuel in the maritime energy transition will spread across all vessel segments.

“The 110 ME-LGIM engines ordered and more than 400,000 running hours on methanol already recorded at sea show the potency of our methanol concept. Indeed, in response to the increasing interest in methanol-powered engines, we recently expanded our portfolio with the addition of S60-, G60- and G45-LGIM variants such that the propulsion power of our methanol portfolio now spans across all large merchant-marine vessel applications,” Thomas S. Hansen, Head of Promotion and Customer Support, MAN Energy Solutions, stated.

To remind, MAN ES has recently revealed that its MAN 49/60DF engine has received its type approval after a five-day program on the testbed.

The Type Approval Test (TAT) was witnessed by inspectors representing the ABS, BV, CCS, DNV, LR and RINA classification societies, who signed the test protocol upon the successful completion of the schedule.

The dual-fuel engine is capable of running on LNG, diesel and HFO as well as a number of more sustainable fuels including biofuel blends and synthetic natural gas. 

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MAN ES plans to introduce a pure diesel engine based on the 49/60 platform in 2023 that will inherently be retrofit-ready for running on methanol and LNG depending on the demand prospects.

The company has already launched efforts to develop the retrofit package for methanol and the plans are to bring the technology to the market by the end of this decade, according to the company. The technology that would be used for methanol as fuel has the potential to also be used for ammonia or even hydrogen depending on the market demands.