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As well as the approval in principle (AiP) granted to HHI last week at Nor-Shipping, the UK-based classification society also presented Shanghai Merchant Ship Design and Research Institute with AiP for a J-lay heavy lift vessel concept design and another to Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) for an innovative LNG-fuelled tanker with additional new technologies.

The J-lay heavy lift vessel concept design has been purposely designed for a Chinese oil major, in support of the rapid growth of offshore demand in the local market. It will provide more opportunities to oil majors in the Shanghai region who can now develop deep water oil fields. It will also be the first of its kind to be developed by the Shanghai Merchant Ship Design and Research Institute with cooperation of an oil major.

Li Lu, Shanghai Merchant Ship Design and Research Institute’s Assistant President & Marketing Director, said: “We have a strong, long-standing relationship with Chinese oil majors and we can now provide them with more opportunities in the oil fields and other offshore construction projects with this new concept design. Working closely with LR, we have demonstrated that the vessel is safe and ready to be used by our offshore clients.”

Thomas Aschert, LR’s North Europe Area Manager for Marine & Offshore, who presented the AiP certificate, commented, “Shanghai Merchant Ship Design and Research Institute is a leading design company in China and we are really proud to award this AiP, we were able to provide unique expertise for this pipe layer vessel. This AiP demonstrates the institute’s clear commitment to safety and to offshore opportunities in the Shanghai region.”

The AiP granted to SHI was for an LNG-fuelled VLCC equipped with a 6,000m3 LNG fuel storage tank, a two-stroke dual-fuel diesel engine and an LNG fuel supply system. This AiP was a result of joint development project with SHI named VLCC2020.

LR assessed the technical feasibility of the LNG fuel supply system and energy saving technologies, including SAVER Air, a SHI patented air lubrication system, and Norsepower’s rotor sail solution. SHI’s LNG-fuelled VLCC design is estimated to reduce approximately 25% of CO2 emissions and 99% of sulphur oxides, compared to conventional VLCC design.

JT Jung, SHI CTO, said: “This is a significant milestone for SHI and demonstrates our commitment to taking a step forward to help meet the challenge of reducing greenhouse gas emissions through a technically and commercially viable design.”

Norsepower CSO, Jukka Kuuskoski, said: “We are excited to be collaborating with SHI and Lloyd’s Register on this project. We are optimistic that support from these industry leading organisations will open up the market for our rotor sail technology to a larger number of VLCCs and similar ships.”