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Friday, May 7, 2021 

ClassNK has issued an Approval in Principle (AiP) to Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI) for the design of a cargo containment system (CCS) for a large liquefied hydrogen carrier vessel, comprising tanks of 40,000m3 each, said to be the world's largest capacity.

Hydrogen is expected to be used as a clean energy source to realise a decarbonised society as its burning does not emit CO2. To contribute to the maritime transportation of hydrogen, which is anticipated to expand its use worldwide, in 2017 ClassNK published its Guidelines for Liquefied Hydrogen Carriers, describing the safety requirements for liquified hydrogen carriers based on IMO’s Interim Recommendations for Carriage of Liquefied Hydrogen in Bulk. Besides, ClassNK has engaged in the classification survey during construction of a pioneering liquified hydrogen carrier, Suiso Frontier, of 1,250m3 carrying capacity built by KHI according to its rules and guidelines.

Having received an application from KHI, ClassNK carried out the design review of the newly developed CCS for a hydrogen liquified carrier based on its Part N of Rules for the Survey and Construction of Steel Ships incorporating the IGC Code, and its guidelines incorporating the IMO’s interim recommendations. In addition, a comprehensive safety assessment of the CCS was conducted based on HAZID risk assessment results, which has led to the issue of the AiP.

The main features of the CCS announced by Kawasaki are as follows:

  1. Enables transportation of cryogenic liquefied hydrogen in large amounts thanks to tank capacity on par with tanks used on large liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers
  2. Utilises an independent, self-supporting design with a structure capable of responding flexibly to thermal contraction that occurs when loading cryogenic liquefied hydrogen
  3. Features a newly developed, high-performance heat insulation system that mitigates boil-off gas (BOG) which occurs in response to heat ingress
  4. Designed to effectively utilise BOG as fuel to power the ship, thus contributing to reduced CO2 emissions from liquefied hydrogen transport operations.

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