Innovative Study: Extending LNG Carrier Tank Inspections Safely

by Admin
Ascenz Marorka LNG Carriers Predictive tech

A joint study led by GTT Group, Lloyd’s Register, and Shell International Trading and Shipping Company Limited has concluded that inspection intervals for LNG carrier membrane tanks could be safely extended with the aid of monitoring technology and predictive maintenance.

According to the International Gas Carriers (IGC) Code and IACS UR Z16 rules, LNG carrier cargo tanks must undergo internal inspections every five years. However, this study investigated the possibility of extending this interval within the framework of an alternative survey plan (ASP), taking into account the associated risk profile.

The research team conducted a comprehensive analysis of LNG tanks and related system designs, considering potential damage mechanisms, consequences, and detectability. Their findings suggest that extending the inspection period is feasible with minimal design adaptations and adequate monitoring of cargo tanks and ship-specific hazard and operability (HAZOP).

Central to the study is the “Sloshing Virtual Sensor”, a technology developed by Ascenz Marorka, a subsidiary of the GTT Group. This digital solution utilizes real-time operational data and GTT-designed tank digital twins to assess sloshing activity and monitor critical integrity parameters. Ship-owners and charterers can optimize tank maintenance while complying with safety standards, enhancing operational flexibility, and achieving significant cost-savings.

Anouar Kiassi, Managing Director of Ascenz Marorka, said: “This study, jointly conducted with industry leaders, is an important milestone in our on-going efforts to improve LNG carrier design and operations. We are proud that our cutting-edge digital technology, Sloshing Virtual Sensor, a combination of artificial intelligence and GTT Group’s expertise, contributes to supporting this evolution in the LNG industry. We believe that this solution has the potential to become an industry standard in the years to come.”

Andy McKeran, Chief Commercial Officer of Lloyd’s Register, said: “We worked with Shell and GTT to ensure this application meets the highest safety standards of the industry. We are very privileged to introduce a solution that improves fleet operations and availability in a world where energy security is of paramount importance.”

GTT, with its expertise in cryogenic membrane containment systems, has been at the forefront of designing cutting-edge technologies for over 60 years. The group not only equips LNG carriers but also develops systems for LNG fuel use and provides digital services in Smart Shipping. Additionally, through its subsidiary Elogen, GTT is active in hydrogen production, including green hydrogen electrolysers.

Source Ascenz Marorka