Believed to be the world’s first dual fueled diesel/LNG Very Large Crude Carrier (VLCC), Yuan Rui Yang is setting a trend which others seem certain to follow as pressure mounts on ship owners to reduce GHG emissions.
Built by Dalian Shipbuilding Industry
Owned and operated by COSCO Shipping
DWT 317,800 MT
LNG storage: 2 x 3,500 cbm capacity tanks of C-type design (on deck)
COSCO originally ordered a series of four vessels with standard propulsion, however the company signed a supplemental agreement with the shipyard in early 2020 to incorporate the dual LNG option into vessel No.4 at an incremental additional cost of $6 million. At this price tag there is likely to be an approximate 5 year pay back on the additional investment.
Propulsion is provided by a WINGD low-pressure dual-fuel main engine and is equipped with dual-fuel generators and dual-fuel boilers. Range in either gas or diesel mode is 12,000 nautical miles, that is 24,000 nautical miles when using full capability.
It is significant that of the 71 VLCCs currently on order, 44% are reportedly either LNG dual-fuel or LNG retrofit capable while three also have ammonia retrofit capabilities. A key incentive is the Phase 3 implementation of the IMO Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) standards set to be enforced from 2025 onwards. The EEDI measures a minimum energy efficiency level per capacity mile (tonne/mile) for different ship type and size segments.
The vessel completed sea trials in September 2021 and delivery is scheduled for the end of the year following gas trials.
There are around 800 VLCCs in the world fleet with an average of around 300,000 tonnes deadweight, an important contribution to the 600 million tonnes of tanker capacity in service. Unfortunately, 2021 has been a miserable year for tanker owners in all sectors with the fleet operating at well below break even levels.