Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL) announced that it has signed a contract with Minaminippon Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. to construct four next-generation car carriers. The vessels will be delivered in 2017 and 2018 and serve on MOL's worldwide car carrier services.
Deck construction of the newly-ordered car carriers will be substantially altered to change the number of decks from the current 12 to 14. Furthermore, the number of liftable decks will be increased from two to six. This means two adjustable decks can be placed between two fixed decks. The newly designed liftable decks will offer greater flexibility in accommodating vehicles of different heights, improving loading efficiency and meeting demand for more diversified vehicle transport.
MOL named the car carriers featuring this new deck construction the "FLEXIE" (*1) series. The company will not only develop a global marketing effort in vehicle transport service to promote the flexibility of the new carriers' liftable decks, but also strengthen group-wide marketing efforts to build awareness of the "MOL Project & Heavy Cargo" (*2) service.
The newly ordered car carriers will be installed with electronically-controlled diesel engine with Low Load Optimisation (LLO) tuning by Exhaust Gas Bypass (EGB) technology. The new carriers will also adopt waste heat energy recovery system for generator engines and electric power consumption reduction technology. In addition, the vessels' hull form design will be improved, especially for low-speed range, based on ship performance analysis of existing carriers. The ships will also mark a step forward in wind-pressure reducing design, one of the basic technologies in the Senpaku ISHIN project (*3), which MOL has been developing since 2009. The new ships' reduced susceptibility to wind resistance will improve fuel efficiency in comparison with existing vessels and significantly reduce their impact on the environment.
MOL has taken an aggressive, ongoing approach to developing innovative next-generation car carriers, and in 2012, launched the world's first newbuilding hybrid car carrier, the Emerald Ace (*4). It continues striving to meet customer needs by launching new car carrier services, which take full advantage of those innovative technologies, and constantly enhance the competitiveness of its car transport business.
[ Specifications ]
Length : 199.95m
Breadth : 32.2m
Capacity : 6,800 units (standard passenger vehicles)
*1:Refers to "FLEXIBIE" and the features of newly designed liftable decks and MOL's sales and marketing strategy for meeting customer's diversified demand.
*2:A joint project of MOL, MOL Logistics, Utoc,and Mitsui O.S.K. Kinkai. It offers abroad range of services including plant engineering such as installation and assembly works, in addition to logistics solutions that meet a wide variety of needs for heavy cargo transport.
*3:Senpaku ISHIN is an innovative project aimed at reducing CO2 emissions by using currently available technologies, making a great contribution to the environmental protection.
*4:The Emerald Ace is equipped with a hybrid power supply system, which combines a solar power generation system with lithium-ion batteries. The solar-generated electricity is stored in the batteries and used to power the ship's electrical systems while in port. This results in zero emissions in berth.