The US shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO christened and launched the world’s first container ship powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) at its shipyard in San Diego on April 18.
In a nighttime ceremony attended by around 3,400 shipyard workers and guests, the 3,100 TEU Isla Bella, built for the US transport and logistics company TOTE Inc., officially took to water at the San Diego Bay, accompanied by a fireworks display.
The ship’s sponsor, Sophie Sacco—wife of Michael Sacco, president of the Seafarers International Union of North America, christened the ship with a traditional champagne bottle break over the ship’s hull.
Part of a two-ship contract signed in 2012 with TOTE, the 764-foot long Marlin-class container ship is the largest dry cargo ship of any kind in the world powered by LNG.
The Isla Bella is also equipped with a ballast water treatment system, making it the greenest ship of its size, according to NASSCO.
The Jones Act-qualified Isla Bella will operate between Jacksonville, Florida and San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Yesterday’s ceremony also marked NASSCO’s 100th ship launch.
If you missed yesterday’s launch ceremony, you can watch it here: