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FLAG STATE DESIGN ACCEPTANCE FOR FIRST LPG CONVERSION

Thursday, June 18, 2020 

BW LPG, the Isle of Man Ship Registry, Wärtsilä Gas Solutions, MAN Energy Solutions, and DNV GL have celebrated the first flag acceptance of a conversion to LPG as fuel for a VLGC.

Following acceptance, BW LPG will begin the conversion of 12 vessels to dual fuel LPG engines. The conversions will be the first for a VLGC to run on LPG. After the conversion the vessels will receive the newly developed DNV GL class notation “GF LPG”.

BW LPG first announced the project to convert some of the LPG carriers to a LPG fuelled propulsion system in August 2018. The flag state acceptance of the design by the Isle of Man means that the project has been demonstrated to have an equivalent level of safety to methane as a ship fuel under the IGC Code 2016.

“We are very pleased that BW LPG has recognised our expertise in this field and chosen DNV GL as the classification partner for this project,” said Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, CEO of DNV GL – Maritime. “This acceptance is the result of all of the partners bringing their exceptional competence and experience to come up with a safe and feasible solution for this innovative project. In addition, the knowledge we have gained from working on the project has resulted in us being able to release a new dedicated LPG notation, which we hope will spur the further interest and uptake of LPG as a ship fuel.”

“The Board and Management at BW LPG continue to emphasise a deep corporate commitment to sustainable development,” said Anders Onarheim, CEO of BW LPG. “For us, as the world’s largest owner and operator of VLGCs, this means that we invest significant resources and expertise to pioneer technology that can be used to push our industry towards decarbonisation without the need for dedicated newbuilding orders. We thank our industry partners who have worked in close collaboration with us to ensure that this pioneering technology is safe and reliable for implementation.”

The vessels will be fitted with two additional LPG cargo/fuel deck tanks in cargo area, so as not to compromise the cargo capacity onboard and a high-pressure liquid fuel system for the modified MAN Energy Solutions two stroke engines.

BW LPG plans to begin the conversions of the first two vessels, BW Leo and BW Gemini, this summer with completion scheduled for late summer 2020. The other vessels are targeted for conversion at their next drydocking period.

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