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WinGD wins type approval for biggest and most powerful LNG engine; first application in CMA CGM ultra-large container ships

WinGD (Winterthur Gas & Diesel) has received type approval for the biggest and most powerful LNG-fueled engines yet built. Class society Bureau Veritas awarded the approval for WinGD’s dual-fueled 12X92DF engines, the first series of which is currently being built by China State Shipbuilding Corp (CSSC) and will power nine ultra-large container ships (ULCS) (23,000 TEU) owned by the CMA CGM Group, a world leader in shipping and logistics. The 12X92DF carries a maximum power rating of 63,840 kW (85,611 hp).


WinGD 12X92DF

These vessels will become the largest container ships powered by liquefied natural gas and represent a significant step on the path to the energy transition of the shipping industry.

The type approval was awarded following a series of extensive full-load tests in diesel and gas operation. The CMA CGM Jacques Saadé will now be able to perform its LNG trials in the coming weeks. Earlier this month, the container ship successfully tested the connection with its fuel supply vessel, a ship specifically designed to bunker the Group's LNG-powered 23,000 TEUs.

The certification process of WinGD’s 12X92DF engine was a long process due to the size and complexity of the engine. We mobilized our worldwide teams of engine specialists, especially in China, in France and in Germany, at each of the critical phases of the certification process. Progressive Type Approval Tests were necessary where at each test significant progress and refinement were noted, so that we remained confident that final certification at 100% of the power using gas as fuel was an achievable objective—and this has now been achieved.

—Olivier Cartier, Technical Vice President, Bureau Veritas

WinGD’s X92DF engines offer the most sustainable emissions footprint currently available, outperforming expectations for NOx, SOx and PM emissions and with CO2 levels over 20% lower than typical diesel engines. With it’s unique combination of Otto (lean burn) and Diesel cycle technology these engines can adapt for any of the potential sustainable fuels of the future making them a secure asset for a long time to come.

—Dominik Schneiter, Vice President, for Research and Development at WinGD

The development of the X92DF engine builds on the expertise and experience gained from more than 500,000 operating hours for WinGD’s market-leading X-DF dual-fuel engine technology. That landmark comes just under four years since the first engine went into service, highlighting the rapid uptake and remarkable reliability of WinGD’s low-pressure concept.

WinGD has received 320 orders for X-DF engines including 60 in operation. The X-DF has been the best-selling dual-fuel low-speed engine technology in the maritime market since the second half of 2017. As well as the first gas-fueled ULCSs, WinGD’s low-pressure X-DF technology also powers the first LNG-fueled Aframax shuttle tankers with VOC recovery and very large crude oil carriers.

CMA CGM Jacques Saadé - visuel CP - 100k-2
CMA CGM Jacques Saadé. In September 2019, CMA CGM launched the Jacques Saadé, the first in a new fleet of nine French-flagged, 23,000-TEU, LNG-powered containerships. Saadé, who died in 2018, was the CMA CGM Group’s founder.

These new vessels will join the Group’s fleet on the French Asia Line (Asia-Northern Europe) and will be registered in the French International Register (RIF), confirming the Group’s commitment to operating under the French flag.

In addition, the nine newbuilds will feature a state-of-the-art bridge design, the world’s first to deliver four major innovations to assist the Captain and crew:

  • a tactical display offering enhanced map views for more dynamic navigation briefings;

  • a path prediction system optimized to display the ship’s predicted position in the next three minutes;

  • a smart eye system projecting a bird’s-eye view of the ship’s surrounding area; and

  • augmented reality screens to offer the crew precise information on the ship’s rate of rotation, distance from the wharf and transverse speeds.

To further improve the environmental performance of the CMA CGM Jacques Saade and her sisterships, their hull forms have been hydrodynamically optimized. The bulb has been seamlessly integrated into the hull profile and the bow is straight. The propeller and rudder blade have also been improved, along with the Becker Twisted Fin.

The exceptionally large vessels (400 meters long and 61 meters wide) will be distinguished from the rest of the fleet by a special livery displaying an “LNG POWERED” logo, attesting to the major worldwide innovation that LNG propulsion represents on ships of this size.

In 2022, the CMA CGM fleet will include 20 LNG-powered vessels, including:

  • 9 vessels of 23,000 TEUs (delivery from 2020)
  • 5 vessels of 15,000 TEUs
  • 6 vessels of 1,400 TEUs, of which 3 have already been delivered to Containerships, the Group’s intra-Europe expert subsidiary



LNG is a vast improvement in fuels compared to bunker oil that is without doubt the worst polluter on the Planet.

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