May 10, 2005

Lloyd's Register completes LNG propulsion safety case

Lloyd's Register Asia has completed the first safety case studies in Korea of dual-fuel electric propulsion.

The safety case assessment was made in association with Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) and Wartsila.

Lloyd's Register has been working with DSME and Wartsila to help ensure proper qualification of the technology for new large LNG tanker designs of 200,000 cubic meters and above.

The safety case methodology involves two key elements: a hazard identification study, which identifies critical issues and looks at engine room arrangements and layout, and a hazard operability study, which looks at ship systems including, for example, a detailed examination of piping and instrumentation diagrams from a safety and operability point of view.

It is essentially a method of evaluating the safety and integrity of an installation, a system or a product through a formal process of risk assessment which can give stakeholders confidence in a new technology or design.

Roy Thomson, Head of New Construction, Lloyd's Register Asia, says: "The safety case approach is well established in the oil and gas sector and is now beginning to be applied in the maritime industry. It is quickly proving to be the most appropriate method of technology qualification for new design concepts which do not already come with their own existing or established rule sets and is helping yards, operators and class to bring a heightened level of clarity, transparency and technical integrity to highly technical concepts.

"Lloyd's Register Asia is proud to have worked with leading players in the maritime industry to pilot and establish the use of this methodology to help to ensure the safety of the next generation of large LNG carriers."

D. Y. Lee, Executive Director, DSME, says: "We aim to be the leading builder of large LNG carriers, and it is important that we remain at the forefront of LNG technology. The safety case approach has helped us to address the necessary design and installation issues so that we can be confident that we have minimized the risks to the system, the equipment, the owners and operators and the environment."

Overall objectives of the safety case were:


  • to ensure that the consequences of all possible hazards were considered


  • to establish design and inspection criteria to develop the technology against the identified hazards


  • to qualify product integrity against these criteria and international legislation


  • to address new design technology, materials and construction for the purposes of classification approval


  • to establish a safety action register which would address all the actions required to achieve classification approval for propulsion systems onboard LNG tankers.

Lloyd's Register Asia and Lloyd's Register North America, Inc. are also currently involved in similar projects for large reliquefaction plant for slow-speed diesel propulsion and gas turbine electric technology. Once these safety cases have been completed, Lloyd's Register will have covered the three main propulsion alternatives being proposed for large LNG carriers of 200,000 cubic meters and above. Completion is expected to take place by June 2005.

"In addition to maintaining our position as the leading classification society for LNG carriers, we also want to ensure that we remain abreast of the latest developments in technology so that we can deliver an effective classification service not only to existing LNG ships, but also to the LNG ships of the future," says Thomson.

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