Shipping Company EPS Joins with MAN to Lead Ammonia Engine Adoption

EPS ammonia fueled ships
EPS looks to lead the industry developing the pathway to ammonia-fueled ships (EPS file photo)

Published Sep 6, 2023 7:48 PM by The Maritime Executive

Singapore’s Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) continues to take what it calls an “act-now” approach to decarbonization looking to help lead the maritime industry in the transition. By being out front with its efforts, EPS believes it can pave the route for board industry adoption of new technologies to address environmental concerns.

Following that strategy, the company has entered into an industry-leading partnership with MAN Energy Solutions to advance ammonia-fueled engines. In addition, EPS also announced a series of MoUs ranging from the shipbuilders, class societies, designers, and Singapore’s Maritime and Port Authority all designed to advance ammonia-fueled shipping.

Working with MAN they look to complete designs for ammonia-fueled engines and incorporate them into the design of a fleet of vessels that the shipping company will operate. EPS says it believes that ammonia engines from MAN will mark an inflection point for the maritime industry in the efforts to decarbonize ships. By developing and employing the engines, EPS expects to create a pathway for wide-scale adoption across the maritime industry. The ammonia dual-fuel engines will be fitted in a fleet of EPS-managed Newcastlemaxes and Very Large Ammonia Carriers (VLACs) slated for delivery from 2026 onwards.

“In the next few years, we expect to operate vessels with significantly reduced emissions running on ammonia,” says Cyril Ducau, CEO of EPS. “Dual-fuel engines like LNG, LPG, and ethane will still play a significant role in various segments. However, with this engine, it will mean that this will be the first time that ocean going vessels will take a significant step towards zero carbon emissions.”

Joining EPS and MAN ES in signing the MoUs are organizations including the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) and Lloyd’s Register. Qingdao Beihai Shipyard is joining and EPS has signed an agreement calling for the yard to build the EPS-managed Newcastlemaxes that will be fueled by ammonia. Jiangnan Shipyard is also designated to build the EPS-managed, ammonia-fueled VLACs.

These new agreements are a follow on to the MoU announced a year ago between EPS, HD Hyundai Heavy Industries, and ABS. That MoU calls for the construction of a series of mid or large gas carriers. EPS has also ordered a series of Newcastlemaxes and Very Large Gas Carriers with CSSC which will be fitted with the MAN ES ammonia engines.

At the same time, EPS will also be working with the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore. The authority notes it is actively investigating the use of ammonia for international shipping. As the world’s largest bunker port, Singapore is examining ways to de-risk the application and operation of ammonia-fueled vessels and develop the infrastructure that will be required to bunker and support these new ships.

EPS expects these efforts will help to lead the industry and contribute to the understanding and application of ammonia as the long-term fuel alternative for the maritime industry.