Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), Lloyd’s Register (LR) and General Electric (GE ) have partnered to develop a gas turbine-powered, electrically driven, 14,000teu container ship design.

The joint development project will enable safer loading of containers, and utilises GE’s partnership with LR on the combined gas turbine, electric and steam (COGES) propulsion and power system technology.

It also marks the latest step in the development of gas turbine-powered ship designs suited for deep-sea commercial applications.

The project’s design will aim to enhance the operational efficacy of gas turbine systems in mainstream cargo shipping.

"The turbines can run on diesel as well as gas, if required, providing further flexibility."

GE Marine operations vice-president Brien Bolsinger said: "The gas turbine is so lightweight – fully 80% lighter and 30% smaller than comparable slow-speed diesel applications – that it can be located anywhere on the ship.

"The design will allow for flexible configuration and, with GE’s portfolio of gas turbines, total installed power can easily meet today’s highest requirements.

"The GE gas turbines can be equipped with a GE Dry Low Emissions (DLE) or single annular combustion system – both capable of meeting Tier III IMO/Tier IV United States Environmental Protection Agency requirements now with no exhaust treatment and no methane slip.

"The turbines can run on diesel as well as gas, if required, providing further flexibility."

Financing for the gas turbine can be carried out on a power-by-the-hour basis, and gas can be swapped into and out of the system within 24 hours.

These options are said to maximise the system’s operational duration and enable maintenance conditions without hindering the ship’s operations.

According to LR design innovation strategic marketing manager Sung-Gu Park, the project is scheduled to be subjected to hazard identification (HAZID) studies and a COGES Operation Modes evaluation.

The HAZID studies are said to assess the project design’s power station configuration, hazardous areas, structural integrity, safe separation, pipe routing and ventilation.

The gas combustion unit and compressors will be tested to estimate the technical risks they might exert while operational to ensure safety and operability.