Thursday, 19 April 2018 09:22

506 USS Lexington1

We normally do not cover ships lying on the seabed, particularly one that has been there for 76 years, but this week we are making an exception for an exceptional vessel. Early last month the wreckage of USS Lexington was discovered by an expedition crew aboard Paul Allen’s RV Petrel. The Lexington was discovered 3,000 meters below the surface approximately 500 miles off the eastern coast of Australia. She was mortally damaged by Japanese torpedo bombers, launched from aircraft carriers, on May 8 1942 during the Battle of the Coral Sea. She was abandoned and scuttled with the loss of more than 200 crew.

Built by Fore River Ship and Engine Building Co., Quincy Massachusetts
Ordered in 1916 as a battle cruiser – design amended in 1922 to an aircraft carrier
Launched in 1925 and commissioned in 1927
LOA 270.7m
Beam 32.8m
Propulsion quadruple screw turbo electric 180,000 shp (130,000 kW)
Speed 33 knots
Crew 2,800 including air-arm
Aircraft 78
Sister ship: USS Saratoga

 506 USS Lexington2 506 USS Lexington3

Lady Lex
, also known as Gray Lady was the fourth U.S. naval vessel to be named Lexington after the 1775 Battle of Lexington during the American War of Independence. Originally designed as a battlecruiser, she was converted during construction into one of the U.S. Navy's first aircraft carriers in order to comply with the Washington Naval Treaty which essentially eliminated all new battlecruiser and battleship construction. Following transit of the Panama Canal, picture above right) she was assigned to the U.S. Pacific Fleet for her entire career. USS Lexington, three heavy cruisers and five destroyers were ordered to depart Pearl Harbor on 5 December 1941 to ferry marine dive bombers in support of the U.S. base at Midway Island. On the morning of 7 December, the Task Force was about 500 nautical miles southeast of Midway when it received news of the Japanese attack on their Pearl Harbour base. In the Battle of the Coral Sea in May 1942, over the course of four days USS Lexington and the carrier USS Yorktown battled with a Japanese carrier fleet threatening New Guinea and Australia. It was recorded as the first naval battle in history fought by aircraft and with the opposing ships never actually laying eyes on each other.

506 USS Lexington4 506 USS Lexington5

The 76m RV Petrel (pictures below) carries subsea equipment capable of diving to depths of up to 6,000 meters. The search team was helped in this case by accurate accounts of where the Lexington went down but ultimately high powered sensors on a remote controlled vehicle led them to the location of the wreckage. Highlights included the ship’s name still clearly visible on the hull, anti-aircraft guns, the shells of fighter and bomber aircraft and even a loose torpedo lying on the seabed.

506 USS Lexington6 506 USS Lexington7

In recent years, Paul Allen led expeditions have found the wreck of the Japanese battleship Musahi, and that of the destroyer USS Ward, both off the coast of the Philippines. The Ward is best known for firing the first American shot in World War II when it attacked a Japanese midget submarine near Pearl Harbor early on the “Day of Infamy” December 7, 1941. The Battle of the Coral Sea was a tactical victory for Japan in terms of vessels lost on each side but the battle proved to be a strategic victory for the U.S; notably as the first checking of a Japanese advance since the outset of World War II. The heavily damaged Japanese aircraft carriers Shōkaku and Zuikaku were unable to participate in the Battle of Midway the following month when the U.S. secured a decisive victory which ultimately proved to be a turning point in the course of the war.

See the short video:


Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd



Wednesday, 11 April 2018 10:12

505 MOL Triumph1

After two years of preparations and gaining regulatory approvals the Ocean Network Express (ONE) has finally been launched. The partners are the three major Japanese international carriers with NYK owning 38%, K Line and Mitsui OSK each holding 31%. ONE is launching its first 33 services this month and will eventually operate 85 service loops with 1.4 million TEU of capacity serving more than 200 ports globally as the sixth largest ocean carrier in the world. Dedicated to operate between Asia and Europe, with over 20,000 TEU capacity MOL Triumph is at the upper end of the size of vessel that will operate in the initial ONE fleet.

Built by Samsung Heavy Industries, South Korea
Owned by Mitsui OSK Lines
Operated by Ocean Network Express
Delivered in 2017
LOA 400m
Beam 58.8m
GRT 100,146 tons
DWT 210,678 MT
Capacity 20,146 TEU

505 MOL Triumph2 505 MOL Triumph3

The ONE holding company is in Tokyo but with the global operating headquarters in Singapore. Regional headquarters are in London UK; Richmond, Virginia; Sao Paulo, Brazil; and Hong Kong. The company philosophy is that “ONE does not aspire to be the largest carrier in the market, just large enough to survive and yet small enough to care”, also ONE aim is “to be a global company that happens to be Japanese, rather than a Japanese company that happens to be global”. The merging of the three Japanese carriers, each with more than a century of home grown culture is a major undertaking, driven primarily by the financial necessity in order to be competitive. Mr. Nobuo Ishida, President & Regional Head of North America, Ocean Network Express (North America) Ltd Inc., is responsible for the company’s performance in the USA and Canada.

505 Vessel Ranking

505 MOL Triumph4 505 MOL Triumph5


The company has adopted an imaginative cherry blossom magenta as its future brand colour, the above pictures being indicative of vessel and container appearance. The cherry blossom tree is symbolic of springtime in Japan. The company is taking the forward looking view that “as a marketing strategy, creative signs, logos and colours are necessary to be easily recognizable. ONE colour and appearance are only part of the equation to stand out in the container shipping trade, and to represent the new that is emerging. Cherry blossom magenta is therefore just a symbol to convey a larger concept and idea for the shipping world, that needs to change dynamics by becoming a more visible and a less obscure industry for its final customers”.

Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd.



Thursday, 05 April 2018 15:52

504 SymphonySeas


Having been ordered in May 2014, the world’s largest cruise ship, Symphony of the Seas was on show last week in the port of Malaga ahead of her maiden voyage taking in Spain, France and Italy. She will spend the summer in the Mediterranean before repositioning in the fall to join her slightly smaller sisters, Oasis, Allure and Harmony in the Caribbean with home-port Miami. Symphony of the Seas is the 25th and now largest ship in Royal Caribbean’s fleet with a reported capacity for up 6,680 guests who will have the opportunity to enjoy every conceivable form of entertainment and relaxation spread over 20 restaurants and six bars.


Built by Chantiers de l’Atlantique, Saint Nazaire (STX France)
Owned and operated by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
Delivered March 2018
LOA 362.1m
Beam 47.5m at waterline, 66m maximum
GRT 228.081 tons
Main propulsion 3 x 20 MW (27,000 hp) ABB Azipod Units
Thrusters 4 x 5.5 MW (7,400 hp) Wartsila WT-55
Speed 22 knots cruising
Crew 2,220
Cost US$ 1.4 billion


504 SymphonySeas2 504 SymphonySeas3


Responding to the challenge of embarking and disembarking so many guests in a few hours, Royal Caribbean now offers the use of a mobile app which leverages a combination of bar codes, beacons and facial recognition, to speed up the process of check-in. The company is also offering RFID wristbands or "WOWbands" to replace traditional SeaPass cards, When it comes to onboard amenities there are a number of new innovations including:

• The Ultimate Family Suite (picture above right), which can accommodate up to 8 guests, boasts a slide from the children’s bedroom to the living room, a floor-to-ceiling LEGO wall, an air-hockey table, a 3D movie theater-style TV room, with popcorn machine and a library of video games. The 212 sqft wrap-  around balcony has a bumper pool table, climbing experience and full-size whirlpool.
• Laser Tag: State-of-the-art and special effects.
• 1977: A spectacular ice-surface video taking projection technology to a new level.
• HiRo (Aqua Theater): A show combining cutting-edge technology, unexpected stunts, innovative acrobatics and future-forward choreography.
• Flight (Royal Theater): One-of-a-kind show taking guests through the history and future of flying and the evolution of air travel which ends with homage to the Wright Brothers


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The company describes Symphony of the Seas ship as a novelty mixture of Oasis-class deck layout and Quantum-class innovations. Other new additions include the first-ever Royal Caribbean waterslides created by ADE (Aquatic Design & Engineering), a climbing play area for youngsters of all ages and just to keep everyone’s caffeine level up there is a traditional Starbucks coffee bar in the Boardwalk neighbourhood. The vessel has an amazing 19 pools to keep the fun going and 15 Studio cabins designed for solo travelers.


See the video


Royal Caribbean International was founded as Royal Caribbean Cruise Line in 1968 by three Norwegian shipping companies: Anders Wilhelmsen & Company, I.M. Skaugen & Company, and Gotaas Larsen. The newly created line put its first ship, the Song of Norway, into service two years later. Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. is the holding company for Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Pullmantur, Azamara Club Cruises and CDF Croisieres de France.


Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd.





Tuesday, 27 March 2018 11:42

503 Torm Amalie1


Seen alongside at Kinder Morgan’s Westridge Terminal last week is the Medium Range (MR) oil/chemical tanker Torm Amalie, having delivered a cargo of aviation fuel destined to keep the wheels turning at Vancouver International Airport (YVR). The Trans Mountain Jet Fuel pipeline system carries fuel from the Chevron refinery, and the Westridge terminal to YVR via a 41km pipeline system that has been in operation since 1969. It includes five storage tanks at YVR with an overall volume of 7155 cbm. Pipeline capacity is supplemented by around 1,000 tanker truck deliveries of jet fuel to YVR each month from Washington State, each truck travelling about 140 km round trip per delivery.

Built by Guangzhou International Shipyard, PRC
Owned by Torm Shipping, Singapore
Managed by Torm Shipping, Mumbai, India
LOA 183m
Beam 32.3m
GRT 30,241 tons
DWT 49,999 MT


503 Torm Amalie2 503 Torm Amalie 3


Without a new jet fuel delivery system, the number of trucks required to keep the airport moving was projected to rise to more than 3,000 a month within 20 years. For this reason Vancouver Airport Fuel Facilities Corporation (VAFFC), a consortium owned by most of the major airlines serving YVR, is building a new fuel delivery system based on the construction of a marine terminal and tank storage farm storage on the South Arm of the Fraser River which will be connected by a 13 kilometre underground pipeline to YVR. Following detailed consultations lasting more than a decade, in December 2013 the project received an Environmental Assessment Certificate from the B.C. government and an Environmental Decision Statement from VFPA allowing the project to continue to permitting. The permits are required from VFPA, the BC Oil and Gas Commission and local governments before construction can proceed. Unfortunately this has not been a smooth process on account of the City of Richmond taking every opportunity to stall the project, having opposed it in principle from the outset.


503 Torm Amalie4 503 Torm Amalie5 503 Torm Amalie6


The map above left shows the route of the current underground delivery system to YVR and above centre, an artist’s impression of the new terminal to be built of the Fraser River. The terminal is designed to accept fuel barges but also tankers up to Panamax in size. The map above right shows the routing of the new underground pipeline from the Fraser River to YVR.


TORM plc was founded in Copenhagen in 1889 by Captain Ditlev Torm and Christian Schmiegelow. Today, TORM describes itself as a pure play product tanker company and one of the world's leading carriers of refined oil products such as gasoline, jet fuel, naptha and diesel oil. The company is listed on Nasdaq Copenhagen and on NASDAQ in New York with offices located in Copenhagen, Houston, London, Manila, Cebu, New Delhi, Mumbai and Singapore. In 2015, the company underwent extensive financial restructuring including a recapitalizing of its balance sheet by reducing the existing debt worth up to USD 561 million. As part of the restructuring, OCM Njord Holdings, a wholly owned subsidiary of entities owned by Oaktree Capital Management, contributed a fleet of 25 in service and six newbuilding product tankers to the enlarged group. This has resulted in the creation of one of the largest owner-operators of product tankers with a portfolio of 74 owned product tankers including LR2, LR1, MR and Handysize vessels. The company also has 2 x LR2 tankers scheduled for delivery this year, 2 x LR1 and 4 x MR for 2019.

See the company’s 125th anniversary video on Youtube

Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd.


Friday, 23 March 2018 10:27

502 Asterix1

After successfully completing sea trials, the Royal Canadian Navy’s new Resolve-class naval support ship M.V. Asterix sailed from Quebec City in December 2017 for her home port of Halifax where she was formally commissioned on January 30 this year. Built in 2010 as a container ship, Asterix carried the names Amorito, Neermoor and Cynthia  in the five years prior to being purchased by Federal Fleet Services in 2015 under the Canadian Government’s “Project Resolve”. She is the first new naval support ship to enter service with the Royal Canadian Navy in 50 years, the first large naval platform to be delivered from a Canadian shipyard in over 20 years and the first naval vessel to be delivered since the launch of the National Shipbuilding Strategy. The contract to convert the vessel was awarded to Chantier Davie Shipyards under a controversial non-competitive contract after Davie was excluded from the original National Shipbuilding and Procurement Strategy on account of being in receivership at that time.

Built by Nordic Shipyards, Wismar, Germany in 2010
Converted by Chantier Davie Shipyards, Quebec (2015-17)
LOA 185.5m
Beam 25.2m
Service speed 22knots
Helicopters: 2 x Sikorsky CH-148 Cyclones or 2 × Boeing CH-47F Chinooks
Class: Lloyds Register

502 Asterix2 502 Asterix3


The conversion of Asterix from an ice-strengthened containership to a modern fleet replenishment vessel involved stripping the vessel down to enable a fully modular rebuild. Along with offensive and passive self-defence systems and aviation capacity to accommodate helicopters, she is the first RCN seagoing hospital facility equipped with a full operating theatre. The government declined to contract with Davie Shipbuilding for conversion of a second vessel resulting in the lay-off of a reported 400 shipyard workers. An unconfirmed Globe and Mail investigation has concluded that Davie is today owned by a complex web of companies that can be traced from Canada and the United Kingdom to Monaco and the British Virgin Islands.

Purchased for CAD 20 million and converted for $667 million (RCMP estimate). Asterix has been described as a stop-gap replacement for the Protecteur Class fleet replenishment vessels, HMCS Protecteur  and HMCS Preserver, built in 1969 and 1970 respectively, both of which were forced to de-commission prior to construction of replacements. Under the agreed financial terms, Asterix is chartered by Project Resolve to the navy at a reported annual cost of CAD75 million. Under the National Shipbuilding Strategy, Seaspan’s North Vancouver yard is scheduled to build two replacement “Joint Support Ships” as permanent additions to the fleet at a total project cost reported to be in the range of $3.0 billion.

502 Asterix4 502 Asterix5


The picture above left shows the rebuilt fully integrated bridge on Asterix and above right is an artist’s impression of the new Joint Support Ships, currently scheduled for delivery in 2021 and 2022. They are based on an existing successful German design and will also be christened Protecteur  and Preserver.

Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd

Friday, 16 March 2018 10:30

501 pacificoak1


Anchored in Burrard Inlet on the direct route between Seabus Terminals last weekend and earlier this week was the Japanese owned Capesize bulk carrier Pacific Oak. That she was anchored in the inner harbour for an extended period continues to highlight the acute shortage of Capesize anchorage capacity. Pacific Oak was waiting for cargo readiness to load coal at Westshore’s Roberts Bank Terminal and I caught the above picture while on the Seabus heading over to the HSBC Canada Sevens rugby tournament for one of the best weekends of the year for entertainment in Vancouver.

Built by  JMU Ariake Shipyard, Kumamoto, Japan in 2005
Owned and operated by Hokuku Marine, Tsukumi, Japan
LOA 299.95m
Beam 50.0m
GRT 101,933 tons
DWT 203,212 MT

501 pacificoak2 500 Girolando Express3


After a downturn in 2016, coal exports through the Port of Vancouver staged a recovery in 2017 with an overall increase of around 11% to 36.8 million tons through the Westshore and Neptune Terminals. British Columbia’s third export coal outlet, Ridley Terminals in Prince Rupert, saw coal shipments begin to recover at 7.6 million tonnes, a 90% increase over 2016 volumes. While there are countries that have seen a decline in consumption, coal still makes up 29% of global primary energy and 41% of global electricity. In its latest forecast, BP predicts that China will remain the world’s largest market for coal, still accounting for nearly half of global coal consumption by 2035. India is the largest growth market, with its share of world coal demand doubling from around 10% in 2015 to a forecast 20% by 2035.

Also in the 2018 Energy Outlook, BP highlights how growing industrialisation and prosperity will drive an overall increase in global energy demand and how that demand will be met with an increasingly diverse energy mix. The Outlook highlights that while China is moving away from coal and has significantly increased its solar and wind capacity, it has also increased coal fired power generation by a third and coal still accounts for more than half of that country’s energy mix. At the same time, the coal industry is throwing its weight behind the development of low emissions technologies to help meet global climate goals, including carbon capture use and storage (CCUS) which can reduce emissions from fossil fuels by up to 90%.

By the way, Fiji won the Canada Sevens this year with Kenya runners up and South Africa taking the bronze.


Ship of the Week contributed by Captain Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd

Friday, 09 March 2018 10:17

500 Girolando Express1


Jointly named at a ceremony held in February 2014 with her sister vessel Gelbray Express, Girolando Express is the fourth in a series of “next generation” livestock carriers to be built in China for the Vroon Group of the Netherlands. The new vessels are fitted with animal-welfare facilities including capacity for 90 air-changes per hour, thereby exceeding even demanding Australian (AMSA) regulations. It will be noted that she also incorporates a revival of the battleship bow design that today’s generation of naval architects have identified as achieving reduced fuel consumption and improved sea going performance. The vessel has a cruising range of 18,000 nautical miles.

Built by COSCO Shipyard Group, Guangdong, PRC
Owned and operated by Vroon B.V., The Netherlands
Delivered in 2014
LOA 134.8m
Beam 19.6m
GRT 10,421 tons
DWT 5,488 MT
Livestock pen area 4,500 sqm
Service speed 16.75 knots (maximum 18 knots)
Flag: Singapore

500 Girolando Express2  500 Girolando Express3


With Australia being the leading exporter of livestock, AMSA has taken the lead in laying down standards of carriage in that country’s Navigation Act of 2012. The Act details such issues as restrictions on carriage, structure and protection standards; means of livestock and personnel access; the strength, design and capacity of pens; mandatory equipment for care onboard including a humane killing device and the disposal of dead livestock.

The export of cattle and sheep is not without controversy with Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Ireland and the UK all experiencing periodic protests against the trade. In 2011, the Australian Labor Government temporarily placed a blanket ban on the export of live cattle to Indonesia following a media investigation into the practices of abattoirs in that country. The trade at the time was valued at A$600 million per annum and represented 50% of all cattle exports. The move created uproar across Australia and resulted in enormous financial damage to cattle farmers. For it’s part, Indonesia has used Australian cattle imports as a weapon in the ongoing disagreement between the two countries surrounding the treatment of asylum seekers.

See the video:

Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd. 


Friday, 02 March 2018 11:46

499 SeabedConstructor1

Malaysian Airlines flight MH370, a Boeing 777-200ER, took off from Kuala Lumpur on March 8th 2014 with 239 people on board heading for Beijing. Unnoticed until many hours later, the plane abruptly altered course over the South China Sea and broke off radio contact. It was last detected by radar near the northern tip of Sumatra, heading west-north-west into the open ocean. Subsequent connections to a communications satellite suggested that it crashed somewhere along an arc 1,500km west of Australia.

The search that followed was the largest in aviation history. It was mounted by Fugro, a Dutch firm, and paid for jointly by the Malaysian, Chinese and Australian governments. Over the course of three years Fugro scanned 120,000 square kilometres of seabed. but detected no trace of the aircraft. Under a new initiative, Malaysia has chartered Ocean Infinity’s Seabed Constructor to search for the wreckage on  a “no find - no fee” basis during the traditionally moderate weather conditions from January to March in the southern ocean. Using eight autonomous submarines, the plan is the scan 1,200 square kilometres of seabed per day.

Owned and operated by Swire Seabed, Bergen, Norway
Chartered to Ocean Infinity, Houston, Texas
LOA 115.4m
Beam 22m
GRT 7,883 tons
DWT 6,480 MT
Registered in Bergen, Norway

499 SeabedConstructor2  499 SeabedConstructor3

Operated by Swire Seabed based in Norway, Seabed Constructor is designed to perform a wide range of light construction and survey work across the oil, gas and renewables sectors. She is also readily convertible to a Dive Support Operations Vessel. The remotely operated submarines onboard are the latest models from Schilling and Triton and are rated for 2,000 metres to 6,000 metres water depths.

499 SeabedConstructor4  499 SeabedConstructor5

The new search area, 25,000 square kilometres of sea floor chosen by investigators from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), is just north of the old one (see map). The search area has also been guided by wreckage washed ashore on the coasts of Madagascar, Mozambique and Réunion—hence the more northerly starting point.  Seabed Constructor arrived in the search area on January 21 and immediately began operations. A blackout on AIS signals at one stage has generated all manner of speculation but thus far, nothing has been located. The vessel is being supported by the Maersk Mariner.

Seabed Constructor has been described as the most advanced civilian survey vessel on the planet today. If its array of technology cannot find MH370, then it is likely that nothing will, and that the mystery of MH370 may never be solved. Thankfully, aircraft tracking technology advances make it unlikely that an aircraft will ever again be able to disappear in the first place.

Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd

Friday, 23 February 2018 12:04

498 star endeavour1


Seen here departing Portsmouth in the UK is the multipurpose container/breakbulk reefer ship Star Endeavour 1 owned by Siem Shipping. Portsmouth has evolved into one of the UK’s largest fruit-handling ports, with fruit imports from the Caribbean, Central and South America, Morocco, South Africa, New Zealand and the eastern Mediterranean. The port claims to handle about 70% of the bananas eaten in the UK.

Built by Shikoku Dockyard, Takamatsu, Japan
Owned by Grace Ocean, Singapore
Operated by Philsynergy Maritime, Manila, Philippines
Delivered in 2010
LOA 163m
Beam 26m
GRT 14,022 tons
DWT 12,967 MT
Class NK
Flag Singapore


498 star endeavour2 496 RV Investigator3

The history of STAR Reefers dates back to the mid 1990’s when Blue Star Line, owned by the Vestey family, was sold to P&O Nedlloyd. The Vestey family’s Albion Reefers subsidiary went on to merge with Hamburg Sud to form Star Reefers however, a reefer market collapse in 2000/01 resulted in the Anglo-Norwegian financial group Siem Industries Inc. stepping in to save the company with a restructured business strategy. The name of the listed parent company was changed from STAR Reefers Inc. to Siem Shipping Inc. in 2012 in recognition of Siem’s broader shipping interests including Siem Car Carriers and Siem Offshore. The company is listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange and continues to operate in the reefer industry as STAR Reefers with a current fleet of 28 vessels ranging in size from 370,000 to 616,000 cubic feet.

498 star endeavour4 498 star endeavour5


Del Monte Foods is a major California based food production and distribution company with approximately $1.8 billion of annual sales. The company’s history goes back to the late 1800’s when California first came to prominence as a major producer of fruit and vegetables. In 2014, the company was acquired by the Philippines based food and beverage company Del Monte Pacific Limited in an acquisition deal of US$1.67 billion.

The seaborne transportation of fresh produce in both conventional reefer ships and refrigerated container is estimated to be around 109 million tons per annum translating to some 16,900 laden conventional reefer ships of 500,000 cubic feet average, or 3.65 million laden 40’ high cube reefer containers. Overall, fresh produce accounts for 4.3% of world seaborne trade with Seatrade being the No.1 reefer ship operator having around 56x 527,500 cubic feet average capacity ships. At the end of 2017, the conventional reefer fleet was about 400 vessels with an average age of 25 years. There were just 17 dedicated reefer container vessels on order.


Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd. 

Friday, 16 February 2018 10:04

497 Ireland1


M.V. Ireland is a dedicated cement carrier built for the joint venture JT cement, in which Erik Thun AB cooperates with KG Jebsen Cement of Bergen, Norway. The vessel and her sister M.V. Greenland are among the first ever dry cargo vessels with an LNG fuelled propulsion system which includes a unique design incorporating a pressurised LNG tank positioned in the fore-part of the vessel.

Built by Ferus Smit Shipyard, Westerbroek, The Netherlands
Owned KGJ Cement
Operated by MF Shipping Group
Delivered in 2016
LOA 109.7m
Beam 15m
GRT 4284 tons
DWT 7300 MT
Main engine Wartsila
Flag Norwegian International Register

497 Ireland2  497 Ireland3


KGJ Cement owns and operates a large fleet of pneumatic cement carriers, and is the largest independent cement carrier owner in the world. A spectacular video of the vessel’s launch can be found at

As with most dedicated cement carriers, discharging is undertaken pneumatically via one or two hoses between the vessel and reception facilities. The cargo is pumped out by compressed air which is supplied by the vessel’s integrated cargo handling equipment. Conversely, loading can be performed either pneumatically or by gravity with dust emissions being eliminated by on board dust collectors. In addition to cement, the vessel can carry commodities such as fly ash, slag powder and other similar products.

497 Ireland4

The picture above right shows an LNG bunkering operation from truck on the River Elbe in Brunsbuttel, Germany.


Ship of the Week contributed by Capt. Stephen Brown, West Pacific Marine Ltd.