Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, based in Yokohama, has signed a contract with MOL (Mitsui O.S.K. Lines) for the construction of two ferries fueled by liquefied natural gas (LNG). The vessels are scheduled for successive completion and handover by early 2023.
The ferries will be approx. 199.9 m long and 28 m wide, with gross tonnage of approx. 17.3k tonnes. They will have a maximum prescribed capacity of 763 passengers, and a carrying capacity able to accommodate approx. 136 trucks, each 13 m long, and 100 passenger cars.
The vessels will be powered by a high-performance dual-fuel engine able to run on both LNG and A‐type heavy oil. It is the first time such a propulsion system will be installed on a Japanese ferry. The engines will have a beneficial impact on the environment, allowing for a 20% reduction in CO2 emissions and virtually eliminating SOx emissions.
Due to increased truck carrying capacity, the ferries will meet the need for a modal shift in transportation and represent an evolution in casual cruising, with relaxed and open public spaces including an expanded bath and restaurant, and an atrium extending through three floors.
The vessels will be operated by Ferry Sunflower Ltd., based in Oita, on its Osaka-Beppu route.