The factory acceptance test (FAT) of the first ME-GI engine in Japan recently took place at the Tamano Works of Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. (MES), overseen by classification society DNV GL.
The engine, developed by MAN Diesel & Turbo, is the first of two 8S70ME-C8.2-GI units for delivery to U.S. shipbuilder VT Halter Marine for installation aboard two 2,400-teu ConRo ships for Crowley Maritime Corporation. VT Halter laid keels for the new vessels in January and August, respectively.
The ME-GI engine gives shipowners and operators the option of utilizing fuel or gas depending on relative price and availability, as well as environmental considerations. According to the manufacturer, the ME-GI uses high-pressure gas injection that allows it to maintain the numerous attributes of MAN B&W low-speed engines. The ME-GI is not affected by the multiple de-ratings, fuel-quality adjustments or large methane-slip issues.
MAN Diesel & Turbo said it sees significant opportunities arising for gas-fuelled tonnage as fuel prices rise and modern exhaust-emission limits tighten. According to MAN, research indicates that the ME-GI engine delivers significant reductions in CO2, NOx and SOx emissions, as well as a negligible methane slip.
An ME-LGI counterpart that uses LPG, methanol and other liquid gasses is also available, and has already been ordered for a vessel under construction at Minaminippon Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. for Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd.