Although ammonia is carbon-free, it is toxic. However, Exmar LPG – a joint venture between Exmar and Seaspeak – commissioned Lloyd’s Register (LR) to undertake a comprehensive risk-based design appraisal that has been accepted by flag state, Belgium. Seagoing personnel also gave input and LR will continue to provide guidance on further design enhancements.
The order is important for the Swiss-based engine firm. Vessels in the gas carrier sector have been early adopters of new fuels, using their cargoes as fuel. Meanwhile, demand for ammonia carriers is projected to grow rapidly as trade in the carbon-free fuel and hydrogen carrier rises.
Volkmar Galke, WinGD Director of Sales, commented: “Ammonia is set to become a mainstream sustainable marine fuel and energy carrier by mid-century, and we are delighted to be working with Exmar to ensure that the vessels carrying the cargo will be among the first to use it. Thanks to close cooperation with the owner, shipyard, engine builder Hyundai Heavy Industries and other stakeholders, WinGD’s X52DF-A will be available soon – not just for ammonia carriers but also for a range of other vessel types that can benefit from ammonia as a fuel.”
Exmar LPG’s Deputy Director Shipping, Carl-Antoine Saverys, said: “As global leader in maritime ammonia and LPG transportation, we have a long history of innovative ship designs and floating infrastructure platforms. With four decades of experience in handling ammonia cargoes we are confident in our ability to safely and effectively use this innovative zero-carbon shipping fuel. This journey continues to shape the maritime industry, and we're pleased with the strong collaboration with WinGD and the other partners to drive sustainability forward.”
The X-DF-A engine series will span WinGD’s entire portfolio, the engine firm said, with early orders already received for the 72-bore type. Since the entire range has been approved in principle by Lloyd’s Register, owners can already make plans for ammonia-fuelled engines in their newbuilding strategies.
The two gas carriers are due for delivery early in 2026.
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