MSC Cruises receives the first Ship powered by LNG

by Admin
msc-world-europa ship lng powered

The Cruise Division of MSC Group and Chantiers de l’Atlantique celebrated today the delivery of MSC World Europa, the world’s largest LNG-powered cruise ship and one of the first to incorporate fuel cell technology. The ceremony marked the next step in a long-term and successful partnership between the two companies, which has resulted in the building of the most innovative and environmentally advanced cruise ship to date for the MSC Cruises fleet. On top of immediate ground-breaking advances in terms of reduction of emissions and energy efficiency, MSC World Europa also paves the way towards the uptake of carbon-neutral synthetic and other alternative fuels as soon as they are available at scale.

A joint contribution to the future of cruising

MSC World Europa is the first from the trail-blazing World Class ships from MSC Cruises. She is an ultramodern urban metropolis at sea that represents the future of cruising and offers a world of different experiences pushing the boundaries of what is possible at sea – setting a new standard for the cruise industry.

Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman of the Cruise Division of MSC Group, said:

We are proud to welcome to our fleet MSC World Europa, our 20 ship and the first to be LNG-powered. This groundbreaking vessel represents the next phase in our journey toward net zero and sustainable cruising and a symbol of our unwavering commitment to both.

“MSC World Europa represents a major step forward for our Cruise Division, the entire MSC Group, and our industry, with a range of unprecedented innovations in terms of environmental and marine technologies, design and guest-centric features. This is the result of more than four years of work between us, builders Chantiers de l’Atlantique and numerous leading providers of next-generation environmental and maritime technologies and solutions as well as many thousands of hours of training for those onboard and at ports.”

Mr Vago concluded: “Now more than ever we need closer cooperation from suppliers, Governments and others to complement our continued investments and take further steps towards the zero emissions future we all desire. The innovative technologies we create here to use on our vessels can benefit all of society not just the cruise industry or the shipping sector overall.”

Laurent Castaing, General Manager of Chantiers de l’Atlantique, said:

We have reached a new stage in the cruise industry with MSC World Europa, the largest ship ever built for a European shipowner. She is equipped with all the latest technologies to offer the passengers an unprecedented cruising experience. From a technological standpoint MSC World Europa, which is equipped with a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) propulsion system, present a new level of performance and efficiency of the cruise industry. This represents a major milestone in minimizing emissions as MSC World Europa is the least emitting ship of the entire cruise industry.”

The first cruise ship to feature fuel cell technology powered by LNG

MSC World Europa is the world’s first contemporary cruise ship to feature brand new solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) technology powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG)The ship will include a 150-kilowatt SOFC demonstrator that will use LNG to produce electricity and heat on board in a highly efficient way by means of an electrochemical reaction. It will be a testbed to accelerate the development of fuel cell technology for contemporary cruise ships and offers a potential to enable hybrid propulsion solutions in the future.

“We anticipate SOFC will reduce emissions of greenhouse gases substantially compared with conventional LNG engine without producing emissions of nitrogen oxides, sulphur oxides or fine particles. It also has the advantage of not only being compatible with LNG, but also with low and zero carbon fuels such as green methanol, ammonia, and hydrogen. We could also in the future transition to synthetic LNG or other alternative non-carbon fuels,” 

Said Linden Coppell, Vice President of Sustainability & ESG at MSC Cruises.

LNG: a transitional fuel and the cleanest currently available at scale

“We chose LNG for the very clear reason that it is the cleanest marine fuel currently available at scale, a transitional fuel as we look ahead to source and use synthetic LNG or other alternative non-carbon fuels as soon as they become available at scale”, said Pierfrancesco Vago.  

Compared to standard marine fuels, LNG nearly eliminates air pollutant emissions, including sulphur oxides and fine particles, greatly reduces nitrogen oxides, and already achieves a CO2 reduction of up to 25%. LNG will also enable the development of low-carbon fuels and solutions such as green hydrogen, synthetic-LNG, and fuel cells.

Energy efficiency at its core

In partnership with the shipyard, MSC World Europa has been designed with an innovative hull shape to minimise resistance through the water.

MSC World Europa also incorporates a wide range of equipment to optimise energy use throughout the ship. These include smart ventilation and advanced air conditioning systems, with automated energy recovery loops, allowing effective distribution of heat and cold across the ship. The ship uses LED lighting throughout the ship, controlled by smart management systems to further enhance the energy saving profile.

It will also be fitted with enhanced automatic data collection systems for remote energy monitoring and advanced analysis, allowing real-time shoreside support to optimise operational efficiency onboard.

These efficiency advances, and the use of LNG, will enable an operational performance far higher that the IMO-required energy design criteria for new ships. MSC World Europa is designed to perform 47% better than its Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) required by regulation.

Key figures:

  • Gross Tonnage – 215,863
  • Length – 333.3m
  • Width – 47m
  • Height – 68m
  • Passenger cabins – 2,626
  • Passenger Capacity – 6,762

Engines and fuels:

  • 5 Wärtsilä 14V 46DF engines dual-fuel engines, that can run on liquefied natural gas (LNG) and on low-sulphur marine gasoil (MGO)
  • 150-kW solid oxide fuel cell demonstrator

Air Emissions:

  • Selective catalytic reduction system that reduces NOx emissions by 90% when the ship runs on MGO (LNG offers a similar NOx reduction); MSC World Europa is capable of meeting IMO’s Tier III standards regardless of the fuel it uses
  • Shore-to-ship power connectivity, allowing the ship to switch off engines at ports where shore-to-ship power infrastructure is available

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