Mr. Nobu SU, a leading member of Asia’s shipping industry, and the Chairman of TMT Co., Ltd. and Bluesky FLNG Corporation, announced that his patented technologies for Floating Production, Storage and Off-Loading (FPSO) System and Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) Platform will be applied to 3 to 5 of existing Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCC) and Very Large Ore/ Oil Carriers (VLOO).
This conversion plan is expected to bring significant added value to VLOOs, and will be implemented by one of the top Chinese ship building companies.
Bluesky FLNG entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in 2013 with its ship-building partner. While this is the first FLNG project in China, this cooperation will generate a synergistic effect to both parties.
The first application of FPSO will be on the Elephant series, which is a coated VLCC with dynamic positioning; hence making it suitable for this new system. The carrier, with its 5,500 kw power generator and hybrid motor driven pump for loading and discharging crude oil, will cost approximately USD120 million based on present cost estimates.
A Monaco-based oil services company; International offshore oilfield services providers; and one of the world’s largest marine energy transportation, storage and production companies, are all potential buyers of FPSOs, having already shown interest in this innovative system.
The Whale series will integrate into the FLNG platform in phases. Whale series are total coated carriers that are larger than VLCCs. These carriers are being converted to become among the world largest platforms with 500m length.
After completion of the installation work, they will become the world’s largest triple hull LNG ships, with a size of 450,000 DWT, which is expected to generate significant value to the carrier owners. The time required to integrate the FLNG platform will be between 26 – 30 months.
Thus far, the FLNG platform has been tested under actual sea conditions using the existing Whale series for sloshing effect; pre feed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industry in Japan for liquefaction process and has completed ship-to-ship transfer trials at sea.
Mr. Su said, “While the patented and patenting technologies are highly useful for adding value to VLCC / VLOOs, I believe that both technologies will also help bolster China’s ship building expertise. Moreover, our target is to offer the FLNG platform to the US, and Africa, specifically natural gas companies that require FLNG liquefaction capabilities, which we believe will improve the production efficiency of carriers and benefit the industry as a whole.”
Press Release, May 16, 2014; Image: DNV