New ONE ship Credit Nihon Shipyard Co.
Credit Nihon Shipyard Co.

Ocean Network Express (ONE) has ordered ten vessels of 13,700teu each, designed to meet ammonia- or methanol-ready notations or approvals in principle, with carbon capture and storage (CCS).

Flush with cash after record $16.76bn profits in FY2021, the Japanese shipping giant has contracted Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) and Nihon Shipyard to construct five vessels each, with delivery due in 2025.

Hedging its bets, in terms of which e-fuel reaches critical mass first, ONE is maintaining flexibility in its choice of green fuel. Initially, however, the vessels will operate on fuel oil.

It has also committed to make the vessels ready for CCS. If ONE were to outfit the vessel for green methanol and burn that fuel in combination with CCS, it would effectively make the vessels carbon-negative, as the fuel itself is a carbon offset.

Considerations for making a ship ammonia-ready would include double-walled piping and tankage, as well as appropriate ventilation systems. While no more toxic than marine diesel, the risks of methanol include “invisible” fires, which would necessitate advanced fire detection systems.

Classification society ClassNK defines a “-ready” notation as “indicat[ing] a ship is designed and partially equipped for future use of alternative fuel following the requirements for installation, controls, and safety devices of future fuel ship to minimising risks for the ship, crew and the environment.”

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