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Friday, December 27, 2019 

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), has contracted with Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) to build two LNG-fuelled ferries, the first such project in Japan.

The vessels will be built at MHI's Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works, with completion and handover scheduled for the end of 2022 to early 2023. MOL subsidiary Ferry Sunflower, based in Oita, will operate the ferries on its Osaka-Beppu route.

The vessels, of about 17,300gt, will be about 199.9m long and 28.0m wide and will have maximum prescribed capacity for 763 passengers, with vehicle decks designed for around 136 13m long trucks plus 100 passenger cars. The main power plant will be a high-performance dual-fuel engine able to operate on both LNG and A‐type HFO, the first such installation on a Japanese ferry. These engines are claimed to provide exceptional environmental performance, with a 20% reduction in CO2 emissions compared to existing vessels and virtually eliminating sulphur oxide (SOx) emissions, reducing the environmental load.

Carrying capacity for trucks has also been significantly increased compared to existing vessels, with an expanded driver's lounge and more area per passenger. The ferries are intended to meet the need for a modal shift in transportation and represent an evolution in passenger facilities.

Going forward, Mitsubishi Shipbuilding says it will continue to construct passenger‐cargo ships and transport vessels, providing technologies to reduce the environmental loadm working together with its customers to solve their diverse challenges, enhance maritime transportation, and contribute to environmental protection.

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