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Monday, July 12, 2021 

Chinaís Fujian Southeast Shipyard has delivered four in a series of five new product tankers ordered by Malaysiaís Orkim Sdn Bhd, of which the 9000dwt 'Orkim Sapphire' and 'Orkim Pearl', and 14,500dwt 'Orkim Diamond' and 'Orkim Emerald' represent the first vessels in the ship operatorís fleet to be fitted with a Compac seawater lubricated shafting system from Thordon Bearings.

Working with the shipowner’s representative, Shanghai-based CY Engineering, Thordon’s authorised distributor in China, supplied, installed and commissioned COMPAC seawater lubricated bearings machined for shaft diameters of 380mm (14.96in) and 405mm (15.94in). Thordon’s Water Quality Package also formed part of the supply scope to the single screw ships.

Sam Williams, Thordon's Regional Manager for Asia, said: “We initially approached Orkim three or four years ago, so we are very pleased our presentation had an impact; they recalled the discussion during the design phase of these newbuilds.”

When the 9000dwt Orkim Topaz, the final vessel in the series, is delivered later this year, the Orkim fleet will total 23 oil and gas tankers totaling 187,328dwt, ranging from 3251dwt LPG carriers to 50,000dwt product tankers. The average age of the fleet is under eight years old. Orkim is a significant player in the Malaysian shipping industry, transporting petroleum products and gas for customers that include Shell, ExxonMobil, Petronas, Nippon Gas Line, and other major oil companies.

Alex Li, CY Engineering MD, said: “These charterers set stringent vessel safety and performance parameters, so it is a testament to the operational and environmental capability and reliability of the Compac bearing material – and a seawater lubricated propeller shaft system in general – that Thordon continues to attract new customers.”

Capt SB Cheah, COO Orkim, said: “As we continue to grow, it has become more and more critical for us to ensure that our fleet operates safely and to optimum efficiency. We have progressively implemented core sustainability functions into our business strategy and regularly engage with representatives of service providers, like Thordon, in evaluating the suitability and sustainability of systems and materials for applications onboard our ships. This is good for both our business and our environment.”

The award-winning Compac system is a high-performance seawater-lubricated bearing system primarily for 'blue water' operating environments. Specially formulated to reduce start up friction and eliminate stick-slip, an open seawater lubricated propeller shaft system offers considerable advantages to ship owners, not only in bearing wear life predictability and reliability, but they are also more economical to maintain, easier to install and are future compliant.

The Compac system, which typically includes bearings, shaft liners, Water Quality Package, ThorShield shaft coating and a forward seal, is guaranteed to meet Classification Society propeller shaft bearing wear specifications for 25 years.

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