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Monday, October 25, 2021 

Estonian energy company Elenger has taken delivery of the first of Damens new class of Liquified Gas Carrier (LGC) 6000 LNG bunkering vessels, the 'Optimus', which will carry up to 6,000m of LNG in two type-C tanks at -163 C.

The 100m-long ship will be the first LNG bunkering vessel in the Gulf of Finland, serving both LNG powered vessels and smaller shoreside customers. Its introduction is expected to accelerate the wider adoption of LNG as a cleaner alternative fuel in the Baltic Sea by providing a mobile and efficient ship-to-ship distribution service for the first time.

The vessel was built at Damen Shipyards Yichang and completed its gas trials in Damen Verolme Rotterdam shipyard before being delivered to its owner Infortar for charter by Elenger – the new trademark recently introduced by Eesti Gaas for its export markets.

Optimus is designed to meet the requirements of ICE class 1A certification and to achieve green ship notation. A dual fuel propulsion system is used for the management of the Boil-Off Gas (BOG) in combination with a gas boiler system, and the interior of the vessel features high-quality accommodation for her crew. The LGC is designed for fast and safe bunkering operations both in ports and offshore, in all weather conditions. Thanks to dual propeller lines and an efficient hull design it is highly manoeuvrable for in-harbour operations. A modern cargo handling system and redundant manifold arrangements allow reliable and flexible fuel transfers in accordance with industry requirements. 

With this first LNG bunkering vessel, Elenger has significantly expanded its LNG distribution business in the Baltic region. The company has been supplying ferry company Tallink Group for the past five years, refuelling its LNG-fuelled ro-pax ferry Megastar using multiple specialist trucks. The Megastar will be one of the first beneficiaries of the arrival of Optimus, followed in spring 2022 by Tallink’s new LNG-fuelled ferry MyStar. Optimus will replace the trucks with a cleaner and more efficient service. Elenger has pre-agreements in place with other reputable clients operating cargo and container vessels, tankers and cruise ships, among others.

Ain Hanschmidt, CEO Infortar said: “The launching of this LNG bunkering vessel is consistent with our long-term strategy to invest in safe and sustainable LNG supply for various maritime customers in the Gulf of Finland region.“

Peter Anssems, Damen Sales Manager East Europe, said: “We are very pleased to be playing a significant role in making sustainable shipping more accessible to ship-owners and operators in the Gulf of Finland. We are confident that Optimus will give many years of productive service to Elenger and its customers.”

The construction of Optimus has been supported by the EU CEF (Connecting Europe Facility) funding programme and was co-financed by Finnish financier OP Financial Group.

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