UECC´s Auto Advance Takes Shippax Technology & Environment Award
UECC has been recognised for its pioneering achievement in developing the world´s first multi-fuel LNG battery hybrid PCTC with the coveted Shippax Ro-Ro Technology & Environment Award for the Auto Advance.
The accolade, considered one of the most prestigious trade awards in the combined Ro-Ro, ferry and cruise industry, was awarded at a ceremony held as part of the recent Shippax Ferry Conference on cruiseship Silja Symphony attended by around 220 high-profile companies from this sector.
In the citation for the award, the Auto Advance was hailed as “a big step forward in eco-friendly Ro-Ro operations and at the same time an extremely flexible vessel conceived to be run on other, newly invented fuels in the future”.
“Her battery element contributes to reduce emissions even more than when only running on LNG, an approach which has every potential to be used for other Ro-Ro newbuildings as well,” it stated.
The Shippax awards have been handed out annually since 1996 to recognise innovation and noteworthy design features on newly delivered newbuilds in this sector, with vessel contenders subject to detailed scrutiny by an expert and impartial panel of judges.
UECC took the award in the pure car and truck carrier (PCTC) category together with China´s Jiangnan Shipyard and the latter´s in-house ship designer Shanghai Merchant Ship Design & Research Institute that collaborated to develop the unique vessel concept.
“We are delighted to receive this award in recognition of the efforts by Jiangnan Shipyard and UECC to bring this innovative solution to fruition, even amid capacity challenges caused by a pandemic,” says UECC´s Director Sales & Marketing, Bjorn Svenningsen.
"This award is vindication of UECC´s proactive investment in developing new sustainable solutions using available technology that can have an immediate impact to achieve environmental goals, as well as reduce operational costs through improved fuel efficiency.”
The Auto Advance, delivered from the yard late last year, is the first in a series of three newbuild PCTCs incorporating multi-fuel LNG and battery hybrid technology in a new configuration for this vessel segment geared to enhancing energy efficiency and environmental performance.
The car carrier, measuring 169 by 28 metres and with capacity for 3600 vehicles on 10 cargo decks, is now plying shortsea trade routes in Northern Europe linking Spain with the North Sea and Baltic region.
The second-generation LNG-fuelled vessel is equipped with a multi-fuel two-stroke main engine combined with an energy storage system (ESS), supplied by Finland’s WE Tech, employing a permanent magnet shaft generator from WE Tech and Corvus battery pack.
With a highly economical 16-knot service speed, the vessel “offers a much lower carbon footprint than previous generations” of PCTCs and fuel economy is aided by the hybrid propulsion system on the vessel, according to the award jury´s assessment.
Furthermore, the vessel will be able to run on alternative low-emission fuels such as biofuel, bio-LNG and synthetic LNG as these become more widely available.
The ESS enables peak shaving for the main engine and auxiliaries to reduce fuel consumption and emissions, while a smart energy management system can optimise power usage in line with operations. The shaft generator can be used to charge batteries while at sea so they are fully charged when entering port.
LNG battery hybrid technology, together with an optimised hull design for better fuel efficiency, will enable these newbuilds to exceed the IMO requirement to cut carbon intensity by 40% from 2008 levels within 2030, according to UECC.
Emissions of carbon dioxide will be reduced by more than 25%, SOx and particulate matter by 90% and NOx by 85% from the use of LNG, while the newbuilds will also meet the IMO’s Tier 3 NOx emissions limitations for the North Sea and Baltic Sea.
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