November 15, 2002

Navy moves ahead on focused-mission ship studies
Wärtsilä Corporation and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd of Japan have made a joint development agreement to design and develop a new low-speed marine diesel engine.

The two companies see a potential in pooling their resources and experience to produce a new engine of 500-600 mm cylinder bore. Such engines are suitable for a wide variety of ship types, including bulk carriers in the Handymax and Panamax sizes, large product tankers, container feeder vessels, and medium-sized reefer ships. The new engine will be built to meet market needs for high efficiency, compactness and environmental requirements.

Wärtsilä's current Sulzer low-speed engines cover the power range of 5,000 to 80,000 kW.

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Mitsubishi's current UE low-speed marine diesel engines cover the power range of 1,120 to 46,800 kW.

Mitsubishi has long cooperated in the manufacture of Sulzer engines, going back to an agreement signed in 1925. Over the years, Mitsubishi has been extensively involved in the building and testing of the first examples of newly designed Sulzer low-speed engines. The new agreement takes this cooperation a step further to joint design and development.

The project is led by a joint working group of engineers from both companies with supervision by a steering committee including senior management of the two companies.

It is envisaged that the new engine would be built in Japan by Mitsubishi, Mitsubishi´s licensees and Wärtsilä´s licensees. In Korea and China, the engine will be built by Wärtsilä´s and Mitsubishi's licensees.