MAY 23, 2017 — Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL) is to build Japan’s first LNG-fueled tugboat. It will conform to the IGF code issued in January of this year and will be subject to be examined by Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism.
MOL will own the tugboat, which will be built at the Kanagawa Dockyard Co., Ltd. shipyard. Yanmar will supply the LNG-fueled engines while Osaka Gas Co., Ltd. will supply the LNG fuel. It will be operated by Nihon Tug-Boat Co., Ltd.
The new tugboat will be deployed in Osaka Bay in April 2019. It will be equipped with high-performance dual fuel engines that allow high-speed operation and superior environmental performance, and will be the first LNG-fueled tugboat to escort large-scale freighters in Osaka Bay and the Seto Inland Sea.
MOL says that the development of the tugboat will also spur the initial development of an LNG fuel supply system for vessels in Osaka Bay.
The tugboat will be built as an element of MOL’s “Ishin Next” smart ship project and knowledge and expertise gained through the tugboat’s development and operation will be fed back to various types of LNG-fueled ships including the environment-friendly ferry Ishin-II.