Preparing for its voyage to North America, car carrier Siem Confucius was refuelled by LNG bunker vessel Engie Zeebrugge, loading 1,500 tonnes of LNG by ship-to-ship (STS) transfer in about eight hours at the Port of Emden
The 200-m, dual-fuel car carrier is chartered by Volkswagen to ship vehicles from Europe via the Port of Emden. Siem Confucius’ route runs directly from Emden to Halifax, Canada. In mid-June, Siem Confucius called the Ems Quay to load vehicles at the port.
“Modern shipping requires modern choices in ports. I am pleased that in Emden we can offer shipowners and the port industry the right conditions for switching to other fuels,” explained Niedersachsen Ports and Jade Weser Port Realisierungs managing director Holger Banik.
Siem Confucius and its sister vessel Siem Aristotle were both built in China by Xiamen Shipbuilding. Each vessel has a length overall of 200 m, beam of 38 m, with 13 car decks with a capacity of 7,500 car equivalent units, which will enable them to transport about 4,700 vehicles.
Each vessel has a single 12,600-kW MAN B&W dual-fuel engine and two 1,800-m3 tanks for LNG.
Since November 2019, LNG-powered vessels have been refuelling at the Ems Pier via STS transfer. Prior to this, the statutory licensing foundations and safety concepts were developed in collaboration with the local fire department, the Waterways and Shipping Office, and the Directorate-General for Waterways and Shipping.
To accommodate deeper-draught vehicle carriers calling at the port, the harbour basin at the Ems Pier was deepened to 10.8 m over a length of 400 m and a breadth of 45 m in 2019.
The port’s experience with LNG as a fuel stretches back further than 2015. MS Ostfriesland, the ferry to the Island of Borkum, owned and operated by AG EMS, runs on LNG. Ostfriesland has been bunkered via truck-to-ship transfer. AG Ems has plans to convert another ferry to LNG propulsion.