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World’s First LNG-Powered Fishing Vessel

Being built by Cemre Shipyard in Istanbul for Norwegian fishing group Liegruppen, the purse-seiner Libas will feature a MAN Diesel & Turbo system and be the world’s first fishing vessel with LNG propulsion.


Designed by Norway-based Salt Ship Design, Libas will be 86 m long, have a 17.8 m beam, and be equipped for both single and double trawling. It will have a MAN 6L51/60DF dual-fuel main engine, Renk gearbox, MAN Alpha propeller system, and MAN Cryo LNG fuel-gas system.

Salt Ship Design spokesman Egil Sandvik told NauticExpo e-magazine that Libas will also have a battery pack:

The pack will work in combination with the MAN DF engine for peak shaving during transit to ensure constant load for fuel saving—as well as any other required power demand—in order to optimize onboard energy efficiency. The battery pack can also be used when the vessel is in port.

Lex Nijsen, MAN’s head of four-stroke marine, explained: “This efficient, low-emission, and proven LNG-fuelled propulsion package is a world first for this environmentally sensitive sector.”

A key part of the propulsion chain is the MAN Cryo LNG fuel-gas system. In 2015 MAN bought and fully integrated fuel-gas specialist Cryo AB, rebranding it as MAN Cryo. It gives MAN the ability to fill, store and vaporize LNG and then supply it to engines aboard ships. The gas is fed to the engines using the tank pressure—no pumps are needed making maintenance costs low.

The scope of the MAN Cryo fuel-gas system aboard Libas includes a 350 m3 vacuum-insulated cylindrical Type-C tank; a “Coldbox” with process equipment, manifold and instrumentation; and an emergency shutdown system. The tank stores LNG at the lowest possible temperature—to minus 163°C—until it is evaporated and supplied to the 6L51/60DF main engine. MAN will also supply an LNG bunker station. Nijsen explained:

We offer a full system approach with regard to gas propulsion. This includes new builds as well as retrofits of existing vessels. More projects are being realized as we speak.

MAN retrofitted container vessel Wes Amelie to LNG. And in July this year MAN announced a further significant box ship contract to provide propulsion systems for two 2,525 teu vessels. Delivery is scheduled for 2019 and each ship will have a 7S80ME-GI Mk 9.5 main engine, three MAN 6L35/44DF gensets, and a MAN Alpha FPP propeller system.

Being built at the Keppel AmFELS yard in Brownsville, Texas for US Jones Act carrier Pasha Hawaii, the ships will sail between Hawaii and the US mainland. Due for launch in the first and third quarters of 2020, they will operate fully on LNG from day one.