DECEMBER 8, 2014 — So, how ready is a newbuilding described as LNG ready? ABS is moving to make the term a little less fuzzy. It has published the ABS Guide for LNG Fuel Ready Vessels to support members and clients in preparing newbuildings for future conversion to gas propulsion.
The Guide formalizes the process for clients who wish to plan for conversion to LNG fuel at a future date by providing a detailed review and approval and an associated class notation.
"ABS is a leader in LNG as fuel, with a number of newbuilding and conversion projects in progress, and there is strong interest in preparing for a future in which LNG takes a bigger role," says ABS Chairman and CEO Christopher J. Wiernicki. "The Guide for LNG Fuel Ready Vessels draws on our practical experience by providing a detailed approval process and a notation that clarifies the extent to which a vessel is LNG Fuel Ready."
The Guide includes a basic level of Concept Design Approval, with a design review for approval in principle (AIP), and two optional levels for general design approval and installed equipment, which constitute a complete review and survey of the system to be installed on the ship.
The first optional level is a General Design Review that allows an owner to approach a shipyard with a reviewed design package for the gas-fueled system at the time of conversion.
The second optional level is Detail Design Approval and Installation which constitutes a complete design review and survey of a system that will be installed on the LNG ready ship in accordance with the ABS Guide for Propulsion and Auxiliary Systems for Gas Fueled Ships.
The first level provides an AIP and a descriptive note in the ABS Record, the second level provides a Statement of Compliance with a descriptive note listing the parts of the system that have been reviewed. The third level results in an LNG Fuel Ready class notation for the parts of the system that have been installed, confirming that the fuel system is in full compliance with the ABS Guide to Gas Fueled Ships at the time of the shipbuilding newbuilding contract.
"The projects ABS has already worked on demonstrate the variability from the designer's and owner's perspective of the requirements associated with the term LNG Ready," says ABS Vice President of Global Gas Solutions Patrick Janssens. "Rather than rely solely on current notations and descriptive notes to express to what extent a ship is LNG ready, the ABS Guide and notation are powerful tools that go beyond the basics to help clients specify work to be done in the construction phase and when they are ready to convert."
ABS has a long history in supporting the evaluation of the use of LNG as fuel, undertaking AIP, completing LNG-ready evaluations and providing classification services for LNG conversions as well as newbuilding projects in the U.S. and Europe.