Dutch First for LNG-Fueled Barges
Titan LNG, a Dutch supplier of LNG to a transport fuel, said May 10 it managed the first de-bunkering of a LNG-powered inland waterway barge: the Greenstream in the Dutch port of Moerdijk. The barge's tanks had to be emptied ahead of a visit to the shipyard.
The exercise should improve knowledge of how to transfer LNG between barges in future, and make the fuel's use on inland waterways vessels safer and more common.
The procedure was executed in close collaboration between Amulet Management & Services, Cryonorm, Titan LNG and the Port of Moerdijk with support from the Port of Rotterdam. All stakeholders, including charterer Royal Dutch Shell, shipper Interstream and Lloyds participated in the project and provided feedback on the safety protocols made specifically for this ship-to-ship transfer.
Greenstream is the first fully LNG-powered barge operating in northwest Europe, said Titan LNG, noting that it needed to return to the shipyard with empty LNG storage tanks. The involved parties decided to transfer the LNG into her sister barge, Green Rhine, at the port of Moerdijk.
“The transfer of the LNG was completed quickly to the satisfaction and high standards of all parties involved. After the transfer most of the remaining methane was consumed using the engine and then the tanks were purged with nitrogen”, commented Michael Schaap, Marine Advisor Titan LNG.
Two weeks ago Engie and Port of Antwerp in Belgium announced they are to develop a purpose-built LNG hub that will include the first shore-to-ship LNG bunkering station in Europe, which will be suitable for refuelling both inland and coastal vessels including dredgers and tugboats.
Dozens of marine LNG bunkering hubs across northern Europe are already built and operated by specialised suppliers such as Skangas, Shell-Gasnor and Bomin Linde, and these already serve dozens of sea-going ships, with still more ships now being built or converted to run on LNG.