General Electric (GE) has won a contract from China’s Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding to provide power and propulsion systems for six new liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers.
Hudong-Zhonghua will build China’s first electrically propelled 174,000m³ LNG vessels at its shipyard in Shanghai for major Asian shipping companies, including China Shipping Group and Sinopec Kantons Holdings.
Under the deal, GE will deliver induction motors with pulse width modulation (PWM) propulsion technology driven by dual-fuel diesel-electric (DFDE) engines that can run on natural gas, marine diesel gas or heavy fuel oil.
GE Power Conversion marine business leader Paul English said the company’s power and propulsion solutions combine induction-based technology with a PWM converter.
"The combination of a single PWM drive and high-power direct-drive induction motor per shaft line is both simple to install and operate, has a very low maintenance requirement and is extremely reliable."
"We will provide Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding Group with technical support during the design phase of the systems and share our technical expertise on the DFDE solution," he added.
The new vessels, which are scheduled to be delivered between April 2016 and November 2017, will be used to transport LNG from Australia to China.
The shipbuilder selected GE’s dual-fuel diesel-electric (DFDE) propulsion for the new vessels, as the electrical propulsion technology is more efficient and has less impact on the environment due to its lower fuel consumption and emissions.
The DFDE drive systems are also more compact, which allows carriers to hold more cargo.
Each of the six LNG vessels will be equipped with two propulsion systems comprising of generators, main and cargo switchboards, transformers, MV7000 converters, motors and remote control.
GE will be responsible for design, engineering, commissioning, training and assistance for sea and gas trials.