Another important milestone was marked last week, with the installation of three LNG fuel tanks in the first ship.
The double-walled, stainless steel tanks – which are 110 feet in length and 20.6 feet in diameter – weigh 225 metric tons and will hold more than enough LNG fuel for two round-trip voyages between the vessel's future ports of call, Jacksonville, FL, and San Juan, Puerto Rico.
"While we are all excitedly watching these ships take shape, we are particularly proud of the role we, as a company, are playing to bring the most modern, technologically advanced and environmentally friendly ConRo ships in the world to the Jones Act market of Puerto Rico," said Tom Crowley, company chairman and CEO. "There are no other ships of their kind being built anywhere else in the world today, and they are being constructed right here at home – in the United States of America. Having that shipbuilding capability here is essential to our national defense and an important reason we as a country need the Jones Act to be maintained and strengthened."
Crowley's two Jones Act ConRo ships, which will be named El Coquí (ko-kee) and Taíno (tahy-noh), are are scheduled for delivery second and fourth quarter 2017 respectively.
"It's very impressive to see these new state-of-the-art Commitment Class ships take shape," said John Hourihan, senior vice president and general manager, Puerto Rico services. "Seeing those LNG tanks being placed into El Coquí really resonates with me because we are setting a new standard for environmentally responsible shipping."
The Commitment Class ships have been designed to maximize the carriage of 53-foot, 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 , have a deep draft of 10 meters, and an approximate deadweight capacity of 26,500 metric tonnes. Cargo capacity will be approximately 2,400 TEUs (20-foot-equivalent-units), with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles in an enclosed Ro/Ro garage.
Each ship will be powered by an MAN B&W 8S70ME-GI8.2 main engine and three MAN 9L28/32DF auxiliary engines, all fueled by LNG .
The ship design is provided by Wartsila Ship Design in conjunction with Crowley subsidiary Jensen Maritime.