Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Crowley to Build New LNG Con/Ro Ships

Crowley Maritime announced Nov. 25 that it has signed a contract with Mississippi-based VT Halter Marine to build two of the world’s first liquid natural gas-powered combination container roll-on/roll-off (Con/Ro) ships.

The vessels are designed to travel at speeds up to 22 knots and carry containers ranging in size from 20-foot standard to 53-foot-long, 102-inch-wide, high-capacity units, along with hundreds of vehicles in enclosed, weather-tight car decking.

The Commitment Class, Jones Act ships are scheduled for delivery in second and fourth quarters of 2017 to replace Crowley’s towed triple-deck barge fleet, which has operated continuously since the early 1970s.

The new double-hulled Con/Ro ships have been designed to maximize the carriage of 102-inch-wide containers, which offer the most cubic cargo capacity in the trade. The ships will be 219.5 meters long, 32.3 meters wide (beam), have a deep draft of 10 meters, and an approximate deadweight capacity of 26,500 metric tons. Cargo capacity will be about 2,400 TEUs, with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles. The main propulsion and auxiliary engines will be fueled with LNG.

The new ships are to be named El Coquí (ko-kee) and Taíno (tahy-noh). El Coquí is the common name for several species of small frogs that are native to Puerto Rico, and Taíno were native Puerto Ricans who lived off the land.

Crowley says Seattle-based subsidiary Jensen Maritime is expected to provide management and supervision throughout the construction.