FEBRUARY 18, 2014 — Totem Ocean Trailer Express (Totem Ocean) reports that Wärtsilä will supply main engines, generators and integrated LNG storage and fuel gas handling systems (LNGPac) for the conversion to LNG fueling of its two Orca Class roll-on/roll-off cargo ships - M.V. Midnight Sun and M.V. North Star. The conversions will be the largest ever undertaken in North America.
Totem Ocean has not yet selected the shipyard that will carry out the conversions.
John Parrott, President of Totem Ocean, cited Wärtsilä's proven technology as a deciding factor in selecting the company. Mr. Parrott emphasized that "maintaining reliable, on time service is critical to Totem Ocean's customers as well as the economy and citizens of Alaska."
The contract was signed in the fourth quarter of 2013, and executives from both companies met on February 17, 2014 in Tacoma, WA, to announce the project.
"Today marks the beginning of a long relationship between our two companies," said Mr. Parrott. "Our relationship will outlast this project to extend over the 35-plus year life of our vessels."
The two Totem Ocean class ships transport about one-third of all the goods required by the inhabitants of Alaska. Cargo includes essential items such as food, household goods, vehicles, construction materials and military supply support.
As a result of the conversion, the Totem Ocean vessels will set new standards for environmental responsibility by reducing sulfur oxide (SOx) emission by 100 percent; particulate matter (PM) by 91 percent; nitrogen oxide (NOx) by 90 percent; and carbon dioxide (CO2) by 35 per cent.
"It is an unprecedentedly exciting time to be in the maritime industry," says Björn Rosengren, President & CEO of Wärtsilä Corporation. "Economic constraints and the need to comply with environmental legislation have combined to accelerate the switch to LNG fuel. Wärtsilä is uniquely positioned to enable this transition since we have been a leader in developing the appropriate technology for nearly 30 years. We look forward to working with TOTE on converting the Midnight Sun and North Star to LNG so that they can realize the benefits that LNG as a marine fuel can provide."
Each of the vessels will be equipped with four 12-cylinder Wärtsilä 50DF dual-fuel engines and generator sets. The Wärtsilä 50DF engines have been designed to give high output combined with fuel flexibility, low emissions, efficiency and reliability. They can be run either on natural gas, light fuel oil or heavy fuel oil.
Wärtsilä is also providing the vessels with two 1,100 cu.m LNG fuel storage tanks and the associated automation and fuel gas handling systems (LNGPac).
In addition to the equipment, Wärtsilä is taking responsibility for the design, engineering and integration of the system, and project and site management for its scope of supply
"We are seeing a transformative change in the marine industry with the switch from oil based product to natural gas," says Quentin Stewart, Sales Manager, Ship Power, Wärtsilä North America.