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MAN Energy Solutions, ABB to cooperate on dual-fuel electric propulsion concept for next-generation FSRUs and LNG carriers

MAN Energy Solutions and ABB have signed a Decarbonization Cooperation agreement regarding the development of a next-generation, Dual-Fuel, Electric+ (DFE+) propulsion concept for LNG carriers.

The DFE+ concept features the just-launched MAN 49/60DF engine and ABB’s Dynamic AC (DAC) technology and aims to deliver the operational flexibility shipowners need to cut carbon footprints as well as fuel bills for liquefied natural gas carriers. The scope of the collaboration covers a joint concept study between the partners sharing technical data, and discussing interfaces and system integration. MAN Energy Solutions and ABB intend to promote the concept to customers jointly.

Progressive regulations on emissions have called for continuous innovation in marine propulsion. To be truly future-proof, ships that are being built today need to be able to rely on flexibility in energy sourcing. The new power and propulsion system will be optimized for efficiency and compliance, and have the flexibility needed to achieve best performance.

—Rune Lysebo, Global Head of Sales, ABB Marine & Ports

The DFE+ concept

Whereas the conventional DFDE concept is characterized by:

  • constant-speed operating engines (gensets) over the entire engine load;

  • optimized for high load, for example, at the 85% load point; and

  • in part- and low-load have high methane slip and less efficiency;

the new MAN/ABB DFE+ concept comprises:

  • variable-speed operating engines (gensets) over the entire engine load; and

  • better efficiency with significant reduction of methane slip over the entire engine map.

While variable-speed applications are well established for liquid-fuel systems up to 10mWe, torque requirements and the low efficiency of first-generation dual-fuel engines—including limitations in the e-systems design for diesel-electric propulsion systems over 10 mWe—killed variable speed for propulsion systems over 10mWe.

ABB’s Dynamic AC technology enables the operation of propulsion systems above 10 mWe at variable speed with all the accompanying benefits. In combination with the second-generation, high-efficiency MAN 49/60DF engine (with ALSi – Air Lubrication System interface, as an add-on), this DFE+ concept will provide customers with next-level efficiency and flexibility.


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