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Part 1: The Car Carrier Story "A Reservoir of Innovative Technologies" Today

Consistently ahead of the times, MOL has realized many ideas such as a revolutionary- wind pressure reducing car carrier design and Japan's first car carrier with solar power panels, both significantly before the competition.

21st Century  The Dawn of the Eco-Ship

As a new century dawned, car carrier design entered an era of maximizing stowage space to move as many vehicles as possible. Ships began to resemble seagoing multistory parking garages.

Naturally, a car carrier shaped like a building has considerable wind resistance, which creates "leeway," a drift leeward of the course being steered. Leeway reduces fuel efficiency. MOL turned its attention to this issue, and created a new ship design that greatly reduces leeway by aerodynamically rounded the bow, which is most affected by wind pressure, based on analysis of wind tunnel testing data.

In 2003, MOL launched the first car carrier based on this design, the Courageous Ace. It proved to be faster and more energy efficient than conventional car carriers, showing 5% to 8% improvements in fuel efficiency in actual voyages. The higher speed also helps stabilize sailing schedules, further enhancing service quality.

The Courageous Ace received "Ship of the Year 2003" award in Japan. The ship design type was registered in 2004, and patented in Japan and South Korea in 2006.

Since the launch of the Courageous Ace, all of MOL's newbuilding car carriers feature the same rounded bow design. We continue to add other technologies to ensure ongoing performance improvements.

2003: Courageous Ace:launched

Courageous Ace

Capacity (small passenger cars): 6,400 units

  • The vessel's bow is aerodynamically rounded to help reduce pressure from headwinds.
  • The upper deck also has cargo space (called the garage deck) to maximize load capacity, and is beveled along the bow line. This new design reduces leeway and increases fuel efficiency, achieving save energy. It also shows a corresponding decrease in CO2, NOx, and SOx emissions from the vessel, and increases the vessel speed, which improves the service quality.

2005: Euphony Ace: launched

Euphony Ace

Capacity (small passenger cars): 6,400 units

  • MOL has always used its ingenuity in various ways to improve operational efficiency and protect the environment, and in 2006 launched the Euphony Ace, an "eco-ship" that sets the pace in environmental performance.

MOL's car carriers should be called a reservoir of innovative technologies.
On the next page, we show our proposals for future car carriers, a compilation of existing technologies that we should be able to realize within five years.