ABS Secures all Six Vessels in Phase 2 Order, Highlighting Global Leadership Position in the VLEC Sector
Two new 98,000 cbm Very Large Ethane Carriers (VLECs) ordered by Tianjin Southwest Maritime (TSM) are to be built to ABS Class by Jiangnan Shipyard. The VLECs will be chartered to Zhejiang Satellite Petrochemical (STL).
The ethane-fueled VLECs are the final vessels to be ordered for the six-strong Phase-2 order from STL. A total of 12 VLECs, all classed by ABS, have been ordered for the trade from U.S. to China to support STL’s facility in Jiangsu province. The announcement means all 14 VLECs on order worldwide are being built to ABS class.
The order underscores ABS’ position as the global leader in VLEC classification services. Designed to be efficient and more environmentally friendly, the vessels feature the Type-B Cargo Containment System “BrilliancE®” developed by Jiangnan. The vessels also feature Power Take Off systems that allow main engine energy to be utilized by the shaft generator to produce electricity so that SOx emission can be reduced to “Zero” at Ethane as fuel mode.
As a tradition, Jiangnan always gives a nickname to a newly developed ship. Jiangnan has assigned these VLECs as “Bluebonnet,” the state flower of Texas, the home state of ABS' World Headquarters.
“ABS is proud to play a key role supporting production of these advanced vessels with Jiangnan’s own BrilliancE® cargo tank design. We are able to do this both through our deep sector knowledge as the world leader in the classification of gas carriers, with the vast majority of the global VLEC fleet, and our long-standing relationships with owners, operators, shipyards and regulators such as the United States Coast Guard,” said Patrick Janssens, ABS Vice President, Global Gas Solutions.
A spokesperson for TSM said: “The latest order for VLECs draws on ABS and Jiangnan’s shared focus on technology innovation and safety and engineering excellence to deliver game changing new vessels to the market. We are excited at the potential of these new vessels, which it would not have been possible to realize without ABS’ market leading VLEC experience.”
“We combined a lot of experience and knowhow from both VLGC hull and nickel steel handling. During development of the “BrilliancE®” cargo containment system, ABS has provided great support and excellent classification service to Jiangnan to perform a perfect procedure in order to verify all safety features of BrilliancE® technology,” said Hu Keyi, Chief of Corporate Technology, Jiangnan Shipyard (Group) Co., Ltd.
ABS provides a broad range of industry leadership, offering guidance in LNG floating structures and systems, gas fuel systems and equipment, gas carriers, and regulatory and statutory requirements. ABS has extensive experience with the full scope of gas-related assets and has been the classification society of choice for some of the most advanced gas carriers in service.