Japan launches ship-to-ship LNG bunkering business

Kaguya; Image courtesy: Kawasaki Heavy Industries

Japan’s LNG bunkering vessel Kaguya carried out its first ship-to-ship LNG fuel supply on October 20 marking the start of LNG bunkering business in the Chubu region.

Kaguya; Image courtesy: Kawasaki Heavy Industries

The bunkering operation comes on the back of the vessel’s naming ceremony held back in September.

The 3,500-cbm vessel is owned by Central LNG Marine Fuel Japan, a joint venture company of K line, JERA, Toyota Tsusho Corporation, and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK). It was constructed by Kawasaki Heavy Industries.

LNG bunkering operation; Image courtesy: Central LNG Marine Fuel Corporation

The fuel was bunkered onto a car carrier Sakura Leader which will be operated by NYK at the construction yard of Shin Kurushima Toyohashi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd.

Kaguya, based at JERA’s Kawagoe Thermal Power Station, will supply LNG fuel to K Line’s first LNG-fueled car carrier that is scheduled to be delivered by the end of FY2020.

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The unit was ordered by the Japanese shipping major in 2018 as a next-generation car carrier and is being built by Tadotsu Shipyard, part of Japan’s Imabari Shipbuilding Group.

The vessel is equipped with a dual-fuel diesel engine and the fuel gas supply system (FGSS) engineered by TGE Marine Gas Engineering GmbH of Mitsui E&S Group. The FGSS is composed of an LNG fuel tank and a high-pressure pump.

Switching to LNG as fuel is part of K Line’s strategy, Environmental Vision 2050, aimed at meeting the IMO’s 2030 and 2050 emission reduction targets.