K Line’s 1st LNG-powered car carrier joins the fleet

Century Highway Green; Image credit: K Line
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Japanese shipping major K Line has taken delivery of its first LNG-powered car carrier named Century Highway Green.

The next-generation vessel was built by Tadotsu Shipyard Co., part of the Imabari Shipbuilding Group.

The company said that the delivery represents an important milestone for achieving the targets set forth in the K Line Environmental Vision 2050 of improving CO2 emission efficiency by 50% compared to 2008.

Overview of the Vessel

  • Length of Over All: 199.98 meters
  • Beam: 37.2 meters
  • Maximum number of cars loaded: 7,080 vehicles
  • Gross tonnage: 73,515 tons
  • LNG fuel tank capacity: 2,439 cubic meters
  • Registry: Japan

The vessel uses a dual-fuel main engine and auxiliary engines (generator, boiler) capable of operating on either LNG or marine gas oil. The main engine uses a high-pressure type ME-GI engine, which reduces emissions of methane slip, K Line said.

As explained, the vessel meets NOx Tier III regulations when running on either fuel as the main engine utilizes EGR and the generator utilizes Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR).

Based on its Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI), the LNG-powered vessel is expected to reduce CO2 by approximately 45% ,which is higher than Phase-3 target of more than 30% reduction applied for new vessels with contract date after 2025.

Naming Ceremony at Tadotsu Shipyard

Century Highway Green had its naming ceremony held remotely on March 3, due to Covid-19 related restrictions. Four locations in Aichi, Kagawa, Okayama, and Tokyo were connected online.

Digital technology forms an integral part of the vessel’s features as it is equipped with on-board Wi-Fi, web cameras, and a ClassNK-CMAXS duel fuel generator preventative diagnosis-system.

Wi-Fi has been installed on the cargo deck and in the engine room and LNG fuel-related equipment compartment with the aim of improving efficiency of operations such as remote monitoring of the vessel interior.

Real-time monitoring has also been enabled with the installation of several web cameras on the cargo deck and in the engine room.

Century Highway Green is the world’s first newly-built vessel to obtain Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK) notation certifying that the ship is adapted for remote surveys.

Due to the ship’s environmentally-friendly characteristics, K Line was able to secure an operating lease for the car carrier through Climate Transition Loan with Mizuho Bank and Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Ban.

This JPZ 5.9 billion ($ 54 million) loan is recognized as the very first Climate Transition Finance in Japan, the company said.