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Royal IHC launches first LNG-fueled hopper dredger
5 December 2016
Royal IHC has launched DEME’s 3,500 m3-hopper LNG-powered trailing suction hopper dredger (TSHD) Minerva at its shipyard in Kinderdijk, The Netherlands. The official name giving and christening ceremony will take place in the spring of 2017 in Zeebrugge, Belgium.
A TSHD is used for dredging loose and soft soils such as sand, gravel, silt or clay. The ship lowers a suction tube equipped with a drag head on the seabed, and the drag head is trailed over the bottom. A pump system sucks up a mixture of sand or soil and water, and discharges it in the hopper of the vessel. Once fully loaded, the vessel sails to the unloading site. Minerva supports a dredging depth of up to 30m.
The launch of this vessel is an important milestone for the dredging industry. IHC had already started to investigate the integration of LNG into dredging vessels in 2012, enabling us to understand the challenges of this green solution. This gave us a solid basis to work from when DEME started its tender process, and helped us to materialize DEME’s preliminary design for two LNG-powered TSHDs. We are proud to have made a huge step forward in dredger design and to be able to limit the environmental impact of DEME’s vessels. We want to thank DEME for their close cooperation and for giving us the opportunity to build the world’s first LNG-powered hopper dredger.—IHC’s Executive Director Shipbuilding, Arjan Klijnsoon
The dual-fuel (diesel and LNG) dredger has a Green Passport and a Clean Design notation, complying and exceeding with the strictest international emission requirements.
The availability of the vessel has also been increased since it meets the requirements for the extended dry-docking system. Ships under this special program get a maximum dry-dock interval of 7.5 years (instead of 5 years) by replacing certain dry-dockings with in-water surveys.