Two Alaska-Trade Ships Each to Have Four Engines Converted
Tote took the occasion of last week’s High Horsepower (HHP) Summit in Florida to detail its plans to convert the engines of its two Alaska cargo ships to liquefied natural gas-diesel dual fuel operation.
Tote Maritime Alaska has contracted with MAN PrimeServ – the after-sales unit of engine designer MAN Diesel & Turbo – to modify the engines of the Orca-class North Star and Midnight Sun.
Each of the two ships plying the Tacoma, Wash.-Anchorage route is powered by four MAN 58/64 engines. They will be converted to MAN 58/64 retrofit units, Tote says.
‘Largest LNG Conversion in North America’
The contact signed earlier this year “covers the design, development and testing of a first-of-its-kind dual-fuel kit, which will serve as foundation for the largest LNG conversion in North America,” Tote says.
“To meet Tote’s requirements, we have developed a solution based on our well-proven 51/60DF retrofit,” MAN PrimeServ Augsburg upgrades and retrofits chief Thomas Spindler said in a Tote release.
“Accordingly, the engineering approach to the 58/64 retrofit is very familiar to us, and this project represents a straightforward conversion procedure,” Spindler said.
“This significant investment of time and money is a reflection of our commitment to the environment, our customers and the state of Alaska,” Tote Maritime Alaska president Michael Noone said in the announcement.
“The investment will be of huge benefit to the customer on several fronts,” said MAN’s Spindler. “Not only will the retrofitted engines meet all new emission standards; the new components they receive during conversion will significantly extend their working life.”
“We have been investigating and testing many options for shifting the fleet to LNG,” said Tote executive VP Peter Keller.
“The conversion of the existing engines is the most reliable and beneficial solution,” he said, adding, “This innovative solution that has been developed in partnership with MAN, will be an important milestone for the industry as we all prepare for the IMO sulfur cap in 2020.”
Tote set forth the schedule for the conversions late this past summer (F&F, August 28). The work is to start at the end of this year and conclude in early 2021.
Because of the need for the vessels to remain in service – Tote notes that its Tote Maritime Alaska operations handles approximately one-third of goods transportation between the continental U.S. and Alaska – the company has opted to work on each ship in two stages (LNG tank installation followed by engine upfit).
LNG in the Caribbean Today with Hawaii Planned
Tote’s Tote Maritime Puerto Rico unit already operates the world’s first LNG-fueled container ships, the Marlin-class Isla Bella and Perla del Caribe connecting Jacksonville, Fla. and San Juan, Puerto Rico (F&F, February 17, 2017). Both are powered by single MAN B&W 8L70ME-GI engines.
Tote also announced this year that it’s expanding its operations with a new service to Hawaii, involving as many as four LNG-fueled vessels (F&F, August 25)
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Source: Tote Maritime with Fleets & Fuels follow-up