PHOTOS: Mitsubishi reveals milestone delivery of LCO2 demo ship

The Shimonoseki Shipyard of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries hosted today the naming and delivery ceremony for a demonstration test ship intended for transportation of liquefied carbon dioxide (LCO2).

Image credit: MHI

The ship will be used for carbon capture and storage (CCUS) demonstration projects being conducted by Japan’s New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). These include CCUS R&D and Demonstration Related Project, Large-scale CCUS Demonstration in Tomakomai and Demonstration Project on CO2 Transportation.

The vessel, named Excool, will be chartered by Nippon Gas Line Co., which is jointly conducting the NEDO project, to collect and analyze operational data through CO2 transportation demonstration tests.

In addition, Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K LINE) and Ochanomizu University will be commissioned by the Engineering Advancement Association of Japan (ENAA), one of the consignees for the NEDO demonstration projects, as subcontractors to conduct safety assessments of LCO2 transportation operations.

K LINE has already helped to prepare an operation manual for the vessel after conducting a risk assessment for the vessel using its expertise in operating cryogenic liquefied gas carriers.

The duo will also carry out research and development for the ship’s LCO2 pressure control and stability, as well as develop and demonstrate technologies for safe and low-cost CO2 transport.

General Specifications

  • Cargo tank capacity: 1,450 m3
  • Overall length: 72.0 m
  • Breadth: 12.5 m
  • Draft: 4.55 m

MHI Group said that to build the LCO2 carrier it tapped into its expertise and advanced gas handling technologies cultivated through the construction of liquefied gas carriers. The project is part of the company’s overall strategy of aligning its business with the requirements of the energy transition.

The delivery comes in a little over a year since the construction process was launched.

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The construction of the vessel is being pursued at a time when CCUS is gaining growing attention as an effective means of achieving a carbon-neutral society.

Because the sources of CO2 emissions are often located distant from the sites selected for carbon utilization or storage, this is expected to result in increased demand for LCO2 carriers.

What is more, CCUS is regarded as an indispensable technology for achieving carbon neutrality in 2050, and the Japanese government and companies are preparing for it to become fully operational as of 2030.

Along with these activities, international movements are underway to utilize the abundant overseas CO2 storage capacity potential, including the establishment of the “Asia CCUS Network.”

As such, Japan expects that efficient transport of CO2 captured in Japan to overseas locations by ship will become an essential technology in the future.

In this demonstration project, the Excool will be used to verify the techniques for transporting and handling liquefied CO2 in tanks under different transport conditions, with the aim of establishing optimal CO2 marine transport technology in terms of the environment, safety, and economic efficiency.

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