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Rolls-Royce and China’s Bestway Marine Engineering Design have introduced new range of energy-efficient vessel designs, which they say will meet the future requirements of the global merchant shipping industry.

The new vessel designs, which will feature advanced Rolls-Royce propulsion systems, have been produced using the combined expertise of the two companies.

Rolls-Royce president of merchant Oddbjørn Eliassen said that, as international emissions controls are progressively introduced, the marine industry is increasingly collaborating to create highly efficient vessels that reduce operating costs and environmental impacts.

“Through our partnership with Bestway, we are well positioned to lead the development of ship designs that will meet the future demands of merchant operators,” Eliassen said.

The vessel types include container vessels, general cargo ships and liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, all designed to comply with and exceed future emission targets.

Rolls-Royce said the designs featuring its gas engines already meet International Maritime Organisation (IMO) Tier III requirements on NOx, SOx and CO2 emissions, which will come into force in 2016.

Both companies signed a collaboration agreement to develop new environmentally friendly marine designs in November 2010 and the new designs are the first to come from their joint project team.

The companies planned to develop new designs to address the growing demand for environmentally friendly, energy-efficient ships, including the application of LNG power.

In October, Rolls-Royce won £18m of orders for the supply of azimuth thrusters to power 18 new tugs that are under construction in Chinese shipyards.

The thrusters include an electric motor and a propeller which, as a combined unit, can be rotated horizontally in any direction to manoeuvre the vessel without the need for a rudder.

China-based Tangshan and Tangshan Cao Feidian Ports have also placed orders for a total of six tugs.

Caption: The new vessels, which will feature Rolls-Royce propulsion systems, are expected to reduce operating costs and lower emissions.