Japanese trio gets ClassNK, LR’s AiP for ammonia-powered gas carrier

Japanese shipping major Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), together with compatriot companies Tsuneishi Shipbuilding and Mitsui E&S Shipbuilding Co. (MES-S) has received approval in principle for ammonia-fuelled liquified gas carrier design.


As informed, the AiP was granted by two classification societies, namely ClassNK and Lloyd’s Register (LR). According to MOL, this is the first case ever that two classes of AiP, ClassNK and Lloyd’s, have been issued.

The vessel is a mid-size ammonia/LPG carrier equipped with a main engine that can run on ammonia, which emits no CO2 during combustion, according to MOL.

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Furthermore, the ship uses some of the ammonia loaded as cargo as fuel, with the aim of achieving net-zero CO2 emissions while underway.

Ammonia is expected to be a next-generation clean energy source, but special measures are needed to ensure sufficient safety against its characteristics of flammability, toxicity, and corrosiveness.

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In addition, there are currently no international regulations on the use of ammonia as a marine fuel. Therefore, the three companies conducted hazard identification studies (HAZID) with ClassNK and Lloyd’s, respectively, which have in-depth knowledge of ship safety and guidelines for ammonia-fueled vessels.

As a result of the risk assessment of using ammonia as marine fuel from multiple perspectives, both classification societies recognized the safety of the vessel’s basic design.

Leveraging the knowledge gained from these risk assessments and AiP acquisition, the three companies will move ahead with the design of the vessel, which will be a net-zero emission ocean-going vessel, with an eye toward delivery around 2026.

“Anticipating an increase in the need for ammonia as a marine fuel and greater demand for transporting it, the three companies are committed to playing a role in society’s overall decarbonization efforts by providing clean ocean transport solutions with the zero-emission ocean-going vessels,” the partners concluded.

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