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Quest for Advanced Transport Technologies that Promote Safe Operation and a Cleaner Environment


World's Largest Containership: 20,000 TEU
CG provided by: Courtesy of Samsung Heavy Industries, Ltd.

20,000 TEU-class Containership Environmental Initiatives

MOL will lead the shipping industry in terms of environmental protection by differentiating itself, adopting advanced environmentally-friendly technologies to one of the world largest class containerships, with capacities of 20,000 TEU.
From the energy efficiency improvement by becoming larger and the technologies to reduce environment load, these vessels can reduce CO2 emissions per container moved by about 50% compared to 8,000 TEU containerships, which are the mainstream size today.
* Comparison with MOL-operated latest type 8,000 TEU containerships

Optimized Hull Form

Design refinements in the bow and stern of the hull, and the optimized bulbous bow shape are expected to realize a 4.5% boost in fuel efficiency.

Low-load Tuning with Exhaust Gas Bypass (EGB)

Low-load tuning (LLT), optimizes performance and fuel efficiency in low load ranges.

Efficient Control of Auxiliary Equipment

Inverter control is adopted for the air conditioning system in the living areas, seawater cooling pump, and engine room ventilation fan. Improved control of the large-capacity fan motor rpms minimizes electric power consumption and reduces fuel consumption.

For the Shifting to LNG Fuel

MOL is carrying out feasibility study to allow the ship to run on LNG fuel as a measure to comply with stricter environmental regulations limiting SOx emissions.

Low-friction Hull Paint

Special low-friction paint on the underwater portion of the hull has the potential to significantly reduce drag and improve fuel efficiency.

Optimal Adjustment of In-cylinder Pressure

This equipment optimizes the maximum pressure in a cylinder's combustion chamber by monitoring pressure in each engine cylinder and automatically adjusting the fuel injection timing. This auto-tuning optimizes fuel combustion and improves fuel efficiency.

Installation of Exhaust Gas Economizers on Diesel Generators

Exhaust gas economizers are installed on two of four diesel generators. They recover exhaust gas energy from the generator engines, contributing to higher fuel efficiency.

Easy-to-Retrofit SOx Scrubber

Other than allowing the option of using LNG as a fuel, MOL is carrying out feasibility study to allow retrofitting of a SOx scrubber, providing more flexibility in coping with the fuel supply situation in the coming years.

Developing and Testing Technological Initiatives

SOx Scrubber System

The scrubbers eliminate SOx from exhaust gas. The system allows vessels to meet international standards for SOx emissions without switching to low-sulfur fuel.
To address the SOx emissions issue in advance of a revised international treaty that will enact more stringent limits, MOL teamed up with Nippon Kaiji Kyokai, Minaminippon Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., Sanwa Dock Co., Ltd., and Wärtsilä Japan Ltd. to conduct a joint study on retrofitting in-service vessels with SOx scrubber systems.

Next-generation Car Carriers "FLEXIE" to Feature Energy-saving Rounded Bow
- Hull Design Aims to Reduce Wind Resistance, Cut CO2 Emissions by 2% -

The "FLEXIE," MOL's next-generation car carrier, which will be built at Minaminippon Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. and delivered in 2017, will feature a rounded bow shape designed to minimize wind resistance and reduce CO2 emissions by an estimated 2% compared to today's car carriers. The new shape is the result of joint research by MOL, MOL Techno-Trade, Ltd., and Akishima Laboratories (Mitsui Zosen) Inc.
MOL already introduced the wind resistance-reducing car carrier Courageous Ace, which was named the "Ship of the Year" for 2003, a newly designed windshield for containerships that reduces wind resistance, and a prototype sailing rig called the "Power Assist Sail." The company is also participating in the "Wind Challenger Project," promoting research and development on ways to cut wind resistance and utilize wind to help propel the merchant ships of the future. The FLEXIE's innovative bow design is a result of those efforts.

New Energy-saving Windshield Installed on MOL Containership for Demonstration Test
- Cuts Wind Resistance, Saves Fuel, and Reduces CO2 Emissions -

Backed by "the Joint R&D for Industry Program," in which Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK) promotes wide-ranging research and development in cooperation with industry, government, and academia, MOL, MOL Techno- Trade, Ltd., Ouchi Ocean Consultant, Inc., Akishima Laboratory (Mitsui Zosen) Inc., and the University of Tokyo jointly developed a new windshield for containerships, with the goal of cutting wind resistance, boosting fuel efficiency, and reducing CO2 emissions. MOL has started demonstration tests of the device, installed on the bow of the containership MOL Marvel to verify its CO2 reduction performance under practical conditions.
With today's larger containerships, the height of the containers loaded on their decks has increased, subjecting the vessels to greater wind resistance. MOL recognized the need to address this issue in a cost-effective way. Development of the new device began with an examination of the bow's aerodynamic form through wind tunnel testing. This led to the adoption of a horseshoe-shaped design, which encloses the front line of the stacked containers for a more streamlined shape, while minimizing the weight of the main unit. The new windshield has enough design strength to meet ClassNK specifications for resistance to wave impact. In addition, by obliquely positioning the containers placed along the sides of the vessel and behind the windshield, the sides of the vessel will be more streamlined, further reducing wind resistance.
With those measures, MOL expects an annual average reduction of 2% in CO2 emissions, assuming the device is mounted on a 6,700 TEU containership plying the North Pacific Ocean route at a speed of 17 knots (about 31km/h).

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