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Xinya shipyard launches first methanol conversion for Maersk

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Block prefabrication has now begun in China for the world’s first methanol conversion of a Maersk container ship.

On the morning of March 8, 2024, the first steel cut for the conversion of the 14,000 TEU container ship “Maersk Halifax” took place at the Xinya shipyard in Zhoushan. On October 18, 2023, Xinya and Maersk signed the contract for the world’s first methanol dual-fuel retrofit project for container ships. [ds_preview]

The “Maersk Halifax” is expected to arrive at the beginning of July this year and will be converted and repaired for a period of around three months. To ensure the smooth execution of this project, Xinya has specially built a 500-ton gantry crane above Dock No. 3, which is now in operation. In combination with a number of special cutting machines and welding equipment, the preparatory work is being carried out.

Methanol conversion planned for more ships

In the summer of 2023, Maersk was the first shipping company to announce the conversion of an existing ship to run on methanol and signed an agreement with engine manufacturer MAN Energy Solutions. At the same time, it was made clear that there are plans to convert further ships when they are due for regular docking in 2027. In addition to the replacement of engine parts, new fuel tanks, a fuel treatment room and a fuel supply system are part of the refit.

Representatives of the Maersk project team, the classification society ABS and the shipyard took part in the ceremony for the first steel cut for the methanol conversion. A CNC laser cutting machine cut the first piece of steel, marking the official start of the retrofit project.

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