The Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel (SGMF) on Wednesday (6 July) said it has released a Technical Guidance Note (TGN) on LNG Fuel Tanks – Loading/Filling Limits and Level Instrumentation: Considerations and Recommendations.
The TGN addresses the industry need for clarity on how to apply and interpret some of the statutory requirements for the filling and loading limits of liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuel tanks.
The inherent properties of LNG, in particular its cryogenic nature and behaviour, differ significantly from those of conventional marine fuels. This means that the quantity of fuel that can safely be loaded into fuel tanks on gas-fuelled vessels will depend not only on the size and capacity of the tank itself but also on the temperature and pressure of the LNG to be bunkered, said the society.
Statutory safety limits on filling and loading LNG fuel tanks are set out in codes and regulations, most notably the International Code of Safety for Ships Using Gases or Other Low-Flashpoint Fuels (IGF Code).
“However, the methods by which the filling and loading limits should be calculated for LNG fuel tanks have been interpreted differently by some vessels in operation and under construction, depending on the tank type, shipyard or classification society,” said SGMF.
These differing interpretations have led to some vessels applying a lower loading limit, reducing the amount of LNG in tanks. Despite safety not being affected, the fact that less LNG is being carried clearly has an impact on the vessels’ autonomy and in-service operations.
Mark Bell, General Manager, SGMF, has described the TGN as a rich resource for all those directly taking part in LNG bunkering operations or who are monitoring and managing the fuel.
“Our overall purpose was to provide effective guidance on the rules for filling and loading and to explain why the loading limit may vary for each bunkering operation due to LNG temperature, pressure, and composition. The crew can then maximise the amount of fuel that can be safely loaded by following established bunkering procedures and using the available instrumentation,” he said.
This new publication provides practical recommendations that go beyond the statutory requirements to ensure that vessels do not only operate safely, but also efficiently and in an environmentally responsible way.
Also included in this publication are lessons learned that promote industry good practice and form a basis for common understanding between the main stakeholders involved. Gas-fuelled vessels and bunkering facility owners and operators as well as LNG tank and fuel systems designers should consider the recommendations when defining and developing vessels’ specific systems, equipment, and LNG bunkering operational procedures.
An example of operational levels and thresholds that might be used as reference for an LNG fuel tank is provided, along with sample loading tables and detailed information about types of LNG fuel tank, their calibration, level instrumentation and functionality.
Stuart Carpenter, Carnival Corporation, LNG Project Director and Working Group Chair, emphasises the real-world expertise that has fed into the guidance: “SGMF has been able to draw on a vast repository of operational and in-service experience from our working group members (who included vessel operators, tank manufacturers and system designers) to put together this valuable publication, and we are extremely grateful to everyone who has contributed to it.”
Photo credit: Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel
Published: 7 July, 2022
Rotterdam’s intention to mandate the usage of MFMs goes down well with licensed bunker supplier VT Group; MFM providers supportive of move but stressed continuous monitoring is needed for optimum performance.
Cost of alternative bunker fuels, bunker operations and technology advancement are some considerations to be examined by the maritime industry, says Neo, director of SDE International Pte Ltd.
Kim Hyung Joon and Han Donghoon were planning to join the Singapore entities of Hartree Group - either Hartree Partners Singapore Pte Ltd or Hartree Marine Fuels - in October, discovered management.
‘When you think of Helmsman on the next occasion, think of us as lawyers with expertise in various fields. Come to us before a problem develops. It’s the process that matters,’ says Tang Chong Jun, Executive Director.
Bernard Chew was a former shareholder of MB Marine and was an authorised signatory of the company’s cheques at the material time, according to court documents obtained by Manifold Times.
Maersk, CMA CGM, BP and Stena Bulk give insights on availability of the three potential bunker fuel types, their plans, transition from fuel oil and LNG to alt fuels, how important sustainable marine fuels are to shipowners and more.