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Boxships should go slower, says GL

Boxships should go slower, says GL

Hamburg: Current high fuel costs mean that new containerships delivering today should ideally travel at lower speeds than those for which they were designed. These were the findings of detailed technical studies presented by German classification society Germanischer Lloyd on the opening day of the SMM International Shipbuilding Fair in Hamburg.
 
Fuel costs today are about 100% higher than two years ago, explained Dr Hermann Klein, member of the GL Executive Borad, and are likely to continue climbing, especially as environmentally driven legislation increasingly requires higher grades fuels. Relatively small decreases in speed can therefore produce significant cost savings, he said.
 
Presenting detailed number crunching for the operation of 8,000teu vessels on Asia/Europe trade, Dr Klein showed that the cost optimum speed today with fuel at $275 per tonne was 22 knots, compared to 24 knots two years ago. For smaller ships of 4,000 to 5,000teu it would be 19 knots and for 12,000teu vessels 23 knots, he added.
 
But looking ahead, the GL exec recommended that lines ordering today would do well to assume a fuel price of at least $350 per tonne. GL calculations showed that if fuel reaches $400 per tonne, optimum speed for 8,000teu vessels on Asia/Europe would be 18 knots.  [26/9/06]

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