Damen Shipyards has signed a contract with Estonia’s Eesti Gaas for the construction of a short-sea LNG bunker vessel that will operate in the Baltic Sea.
Scheduled for delivery in September 2020, the vessel is designed to accelerate the adoption of LNG in the north-east Baltic region by providing an efficient ship-to-ship bunkering service for the first time.
Eesti Gaas currently refuels the LNG-powered ro-pax vessel Megastar using trucks, with eleven required for a single bunkering operation. The LGC 600 LNG will be able to resupply the ferry in a single procedure while it unloads passengers and vehicles.
Eesti Gaas will operate the bunker vessel under a long-term charter from its parent company Infortar AS, which will be the owner of the vessel.
The 100-metre vessel will be built at Damen Yichang Shipyard in China and will carry 6,000m³ of LNG in two type-C tanks at -163° C. As the adoption of LNG as a marine fuel gains momentum, it is anticipated that additional LGC 6000 LNG vessels will enter operation.
“This new vessel will help us to move significantly closer towards a clean and pollution-free Baltic Sea,” said Ain Hanschmidt, chairman of the supervisory board of Eesti Gaas. “With the introduction of the first LGC 6000 LNG scheduled for 2020, vessel operators in the region can now consider adopting LNG propulsion systems in their new and existing vessels, confident that they can access fast and efficient bunkering services.”