Photo: Image courtesy of Mitsubishi Shipbuilding

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, MOL ink Japan’s first LNG ferries deal

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Group company, has concluded a contract with Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) to build Japan’s first two LNG-fueled ferries.

These vessels will be built at the Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works, with successive completion and handover scheduled for the end of 2022 to early 2023.

Ferry Sunflower Limited based in Oita, will operate the ferries on its Osaka-Beppu route, MHI said in its statement.

The ferries will be about 199.9 meters long and 28.0 meters wide, with a gross tonnage of approximately 17,300 tonnes. They will have maximum prescribed capacity for 763 passengers, and carrying capacity for around 136 13-meter trucks and 100 passenger cars.

The main power plant will be a dual-fuel engine able to operate on both liquefied natural gas (LNG) and A‐type heavy oil, the first for a Japanese ferry.

Carrying capacity for trucks has also been significantly increased compared to existing vessels, with an expanded driver’s lounge and more area per passenger.