Matson taps MAN ES for dual-fuel boxship retrofit

American transportation company Matson has signed a contract with German engine manufacturer MAN Energy Solutions (MAN ES) for the retrofit of the main engine aboard its containership to make it capable of operating on LNG and fuel oil.

Courtesy of MAN ES/Matson

Under the contract, MAN ES’ after-sales division, MAN PrimeServ, will retrofit Matson’s 3,600 TEU containership, named Daniel K. Inouye, to run on a MAN B&W 7590 ME-GI engine.

MAN ES states that, as the lowest carbon-intensity fuel, operation on LNG is projected to reduce the vessel’s CO2 emissions by 24% with a maximum, guaranteed, ultra-low methane slip of between 0.20-0.28 g/kWh across the load envelope.

As part of the retrofit solution, MAN ES will also provide a pump and vaporizer unit (PVU), which will be integrated into the Daniel K Inouye’s fuel gas supply system (FGSS).

The PVU pressurises LNG to 300 bar and vaporises the liquefied fuel to gaseous form for supply to the main engine. Furthermore, its control system is based on that of the MAN B&W ME-GI engine and thus offers seamless integration and high performance in gas mode, according to the German manufacturer.

Post-retrofit, the vessel is expected to continue to operate on trans-Pacific routes between the US West Coast and Asia from mid-2023.

The contract also includes an option for a second vessel.

Jens Seeberg, head of Retrofit & Upgrades at MAN Energy Solutions, PrimeServ Denmark, said: “Retrofitting a MAN B&W engine to dual-fuel running is a straightforward, proven process as our standard, electronic diesel engines are already built as ‘dual-fuel ready’ and are therefore readily convertible.

“Dual-fuel retrofits offer a viable pathway to shipowners such as Matson who foster a company-wide ethic of environmental sustainability and wish to achieve a net-zero carbon footprint by 2050. Ultimately, when bio-LNG and SNG come online in sufficient volumes, ME-GI engines operating on these fuels will also satisfy such net-zero aspirations.”

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The German company has also developed a ME-LGI (-Liquid Gas Injection) dual-fuel engine that expands its dual-fuel portfolio, enabling the use of other, alternative fuels such as LPG, methanol and ammonia.

Just recently, Singapore-based owner and operator of LPG vessels BW LPG converted the main engine of its LPG carrier BW Malacca to run on a dual-fuel MAN ME-LGIP engine.

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