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Hanwha Ocean Receives Design Approval for Large LNG Carrier

Hanwha Ocean LNG carrier concept
Hanwha Ocean is building on DSME's LNG experience to propose new vessels (Hanwha Ocean)

Published Oct 6, 2023 3:36 PM by The Maritime Executive

Hanwha Ocean is looking to build on Daewoo Shipbuilding’s legacy in LNG gas carriers as it looks to invest in the future of the shipbuilding operation. During the recent Gastech 2023 conference the shipyard presented a series of new designs including for a massive LNG carrier which today DNV announced it is awarding Approval in Principle (AiP).

The South Korean shipbuilding highlights that according to Clarkson a quarter of the LNG carriers operating worldwide were built in its shipyards. They continue to hold a strong orderbook in the segment as they look to also advance a new generation of designs. The shipbuilders are moving aggressively to introduce new, larger LNG carrier designs as demand is high in the sector and in advance of large orders expected to be coming from Qatar linked to its North Field expansion project.

Hanwah Ocean presented a design along the lines of the Q-Max the largest LNG carriers. Calling it an innovative design they reported it will have a capacity to transport 270,000 cbm of LNG. The carrier, which would be 1,132 feet long, maximizes cargo capacity while optimizing vessel performance.

Vidar Dolonen, Regional Manager, Korea & Japan, DNV, heralded the design as a “ground-breaking achievement” as he presented the AiP.

Under its class guidelines, DNV conducted a comprehensive structural verification and feasibility study. Critical structural details were validated throughout the advanced analysis. The sloshing calculation for cargo tanks was also reviewed, further contributing to the carrier’s enhanced structural reliability.

The LNG carrier, designed with a breadth (molded) of 55m and five cargo tanks to minimize sloshing pressure, is to be equipped with an X-DF engine and re-liquefication system to offer the best performance and significantly improve CII. 

During Gastech, Hanwha exhibited for the first time a green ship LNG carrier concept. They reported it would be equipped with a large number of next-generation eco-friendly technologies such as rotor sails and a carbon capture system. Hanwha Ocean opened the first rotor sail experiment center at its Geoje site last year and looks to incorporate them into the designs to save fuel.

“We believe this AiP marks the dawn of a new era in 270K LNG carrier designs and significantly enhances the competitiveness of ships built by Hanwha Ocean,” said Jong Seo Kim. “Through our collaboration with DNV, we are proudly pioneering cutting-edge technologies within the Korean shipbuilding industry. “Our commitment is to align with our clients’ needs and adhere to industry regulations, primarily focusing on creating a safer 270K LNG carrier.”

The LNG carrier was one of four designs Hanwha Ocean introduced during Gastech. They also highlighted an ammonia-propelled ammonia carrier (86,000CBM class Ammonia Carrier), liquefied carbon dioxide carrier (70,000CBM class LCO2 Carrier), and LNG-FPSO built for the first time by Hanwha Ocean. 

Last year when Korea Development Bank launched the efforts to recapitalize Daewoo Shipbuilding they called for investments to ensure the yard’s future. Hanwha Ocean reported during the conference that it plans to invest nearly $500 million to develop eco-friendly propulsion systems based on ammonia, methanol, and hydrogen, and to also develop ammonia, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen carriers. They also plan to continue to pursue smart ship technology. Hanwha Ocean’s goal for the shipbuilding operation is to achieve $22 billion in sales and an operating profit of nearly $4 billion by 2040.