The consortium behind the development of fully electric tankers has chosen a shipyard in Japan, and steel cutting will commence mid-2020 with delivery from March 2022
Asahi Tankers’ president Kazunori Nakai has announced the green light has been given to build two zero-emissions fully electric powered tankers. Construction on the marine fuel supply vessels will commence at an unnamed Japanese shipyard mid-2020. Delivery of the first tanker is scheduled for March 2022 and the second in March 2023.
The e5 design has been produced by e5 Laboratory Inc, and has the following specifications:
The first e5 bunker tanker is an all-electric, lithium battery design, unlike the CPC tankers, which are thought to be diesel-electric, expected to be launched by the end of 2020.
As well as being fully zero-emissions vessels, emphasis has been placed on using automation and internet of things to reduce onboard work and improve operating efficiency.
Asahi Tankers and e5 Laboratories recognise improving the crew’s working environment is as important as protecting the environment. Crew conditions are a major priority in attracting crew to work the coastal fleet. This is a crucial issue for Japan as its 5,000+ domestic fleet of coastal vessels will need replacing in the next decade.
Only Japanese crew are allowed to serve in the domestic fleet and the average crew age is close to 55 years old. According to local sources, there is a reluctance for Japanese youngsters to enter into the domestic merchant marine.
The design company e5 is also developing a hydrogen hybrid pure car carrier (PCC) in conjunction with MOL. The aim is to develop a deepsea vessel which does not emit CO2, SOx, NOx or particulate matter in coastal waters or in ports.
Propulsive force will be derived from electricity supplied by the hydrogen fuel cell system and large-capacity batteries. In the open sea, the hydrogen hybrid PCC’s motor will be powered by an LNG-fuelled generator and the large-capacity batteries, resulting in significantly lower emissions than current vessels equipped with diesel engines running on heavy oil.
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