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First ship-to-ship LNG bunkering in Bremerhaven

For the first time, LNG bunkering of a ship was carried out at Bremerhaven’s Stromkaje using the so-called “ship-to-ship” process. The customer was CMA CGM.

The container feeder ship “CMA CGM Mermaid” from the French shipping company CMA CGM, which only entered service this spring, was successfully refuelled with liquefied natural gas at the Eurogate terminal at the weekend. The bunkering was carried out by the tanker “Kairos” through a cryogenic hose that can withstand temperatures of -160°C. [ds_preview]

The “Kairos” was previously berthed in the Danish port of Skagen. Around 180 m³ of liquefied natural gas was taken from the 204.20 m long and 29.60 m wide container ship, according to a spokesperson for the shipping company.

“CMA CGM Mermaid” bunkers LNG at Eurogate

The container ship, which has a capacity of around 2,000 TEU and is the type ship of a future ten-unit series built by the South Korean Hyundai Mipo Dockyard (Ulsan), will be used in feeder traffic from Bremerhaven and Hamburg on the so-called Finland Express on the Intra-Northern Europe Line, calling at ports in Scandinavia, Estonia and Poland. It returns to the Weser and Elbe every two weeks.

The initial bunkering with LNG in Bremerhaven was intended as a test run, according to the company spokesperson. Depending on the results, it will be decided whether the container feeder will regularly bunker liquefied natural gas on the Lower Weser.

The “CMA CGM Mermaid” has been equipped with innovative design features, including a large wind deflector on the forecastle. The superstructures are arranged in the foredeck area, which should ensure better aerodynamics and a higher loading capacity. A straight bow with an integrated bulbous bow also serves to reduce fuel consumption by 15% per voyage, according to the shipping company.

CMA CGM keeps fuel options open

The container feeder is powered by a dual-fuel MAN 6S60ME-C10-G engine with an output of 14,940 kW. This achieves a cruising speed of 15.3 knots. According to the shipping company, the newbuild emits up to 20% less CO₂ compared to conventional ships of this size.

The feeder can be operated with liquefied natural gas and biogas from organic waste. Following a conversion, the use of e-methane will also be possible in the future. The last ship in this series, which is due to enter service in January 2025, will also be equipped with a hydrogen fuel cell to reduce emissions in the port to zero.

The 117-metre-long “Kairos” from Finnish company Gasum was also built by the South Korean shipyard Hyundai Mipo Dockyard and delivered in October 2018. Until the “Gas Agility” entered service in spring 2020, the “Kairos” was the world’s largest LNG bunker vessel. The capacity of the cargo tanks is 7,500 m³. The bunker vessel sails under charter from Nauticor and is managed by Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement(BSM). (CE)

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Copyright: © Wolfhard Scheer

Caption: The "CMA CGM Mermaid" is bunkering LNG directly from the bunker vessel "Kairos" at the Eurogate terminal for the first time