logo #WLNG19 3–6 December 2019

CWC LNG Technological Innovation Award

Shortlisted Companies Announced


Reason for Nomination:

Excelerate Energy For its design and engineering achievements on its FSRU EXPLORER. The newly upgraded FSRU, currently on hire at DUSUP’s Jebel Ali Terminal in Dubai, is now one of the most fuel efficient and capable ships of its kind in the world. Beyond the advanced capabilities of the vessel, the upgrades completed by Excelerate also demonstrate the expanded role of FSRUs in the global market and the viability of conversion FSRUs. Delivered to DUSUP in January 2016, Excelerate enhanced the EXPLORER with the following advanced features: 1. New high-pressure (HP) vaporizers and HP pumps were installed to increase regasification sendout capacity from 690 MMscf/d to 1 Bscf/d ‒ unprecedented in the market. The increase in regasification capacity allows DUSUP to import more LNG cargoes during the year providing greater flexibility for DUSUP to adapt to market conditions. 2. A dual-fuel diesel generator power module was added to the FSRU. The module provides more fuel-efficient power generation for FSRU services. 3. Another significant upgrade to the vessel was the addition of the world’s first LNG bunker port installed in an FSRU. The bunker port enables small-scale LNG offtakers to bunker LNG directly from the Explorer. This added versatility allows Excelerate to facilitate DUSUP in providing small-scale LNG supply services to the local region. Even though the EXPLORER was commissioned in 2008, with upgrades, the vessel has achieved the highest sendout rate of any FSRU in the world. Additionally, the vessel can now provide gas-up, cool-down, and loading services to LNG carriers and LNG powered vessels ‒ the only floating regas terminal to do such. Excelerate’s achievement illustrates the versatility of FSRU terminals in their ability to provide more than just regasification services and can offer regional markets a true full-service LNG hub. By upgrading the EXPLORER instead of opting to build a new vessel, DUSUP was able to obtain a customized FSRU in three months from dry dock to operation. Historically, the FSRU market has favoured newbuild FSRUs as the most technologically advanced option for an offshore LNG terminal, but the EXPLORER makes the case for conversion FSRUs as a viable alternative. Its capabilities have demonstrated that newbuild FSRUs are not always the best option for an offshore LNG import terminal, especially when timing is critical. By utilizing existing vessels, downstream markets will have more means of accessing natural gas in a condensed timeframe and more economically.

Galileo Galileo introduced Distributed Liquefaction As Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) was originally developed as a means for transporting natural gas across markets, liquefaction plants were well above the needs and financial capacity of any private company. In addition, the storage of large volumes of LNG involved, in many cases, a high degree of boil-off and, as a consequence, emissions. All these issues prevented the widespread adoption of LNG among high horsepower (HHP) consumers, in spite of the lower price of this fuel and its environmental benefits. The same barriers, along with the cost of laying gas pipelines, prevented the gasification of small and outlying communities. To address the needs of those consumers, in January 2013, Galileo Technologies introduced its Cryobox® Nano LNG-Station, which packages all the capabilities of a large scale LNG plant into one compact and transportable unit. This milestone was accompanied by the introduction of the ZPTS® Gas Conditioning plant, which widens the sources available for liquefaction: from sources with high content of CO2, such as biomethane, to even simpler gas compositions that require minimal dehydration. Both units measure the size of a 40 ft. sea container and can be hauled by two separate trailers to connect them later on to natural gas mains, biodigestors, or wellhead equipment in a distant oil & gas field. The outcome of this new technology is a Distributed Liquefaction model, which liquefies every type of gas right at the source in any location, and enables distribution logistics that are equal to liquid fuels. This makes clean gas fuels available without the need of laying pipelines, extending the reach of current natural gas infrastructure or shortening the distance between new gas sources and consumers.

Nakilat As a global leader in LNG transportation, Nakilat has adopted the latest green technologies onboard to enhance operational efficiency and operate in an environmentally-responsible manner. To this effect, Nakilat has effectively capitalised on its vast expertise in handling gas carriers and completed the world’s first main engine gas injection (MEGI) retrofit for a Q-Max LNG vessel to run on LNG as an alternative fuel. The modified vessel has the world’s first low-speed marine diesel engine that can utilize forced LNG boil-off gas and HFO, depending on the requirements of the voyage. The MEGI retrofit conversion project is the first of its kind, and out measures similar system installations on newbuildings due to the complexities involved in integrating this new system with existing ones on board the vessel. Unlike most newbuilds, the technology utilizes liquid-LNG directly from the cargo tank, which has also proven to run reliably from reliquefaction condensate return, giving further flexibility in operation. The system involves extracting liquid-LNG from the vessel’s cargo tank, storing it in fuel supply skids (FGSS) and pressurizing it to power the engines. This is also the first ever ME-GI conversion involving a twin-engine configuration along with the associated systems, piping and safety shut-down systems allowing for redundant operations. This novel retrofit completed in a marathon period of 40 days, comprising of 165,000 man hours without any Lost Time Incidents (LTIs), is but an indication of the level of investment, in terms of skilled expertise and innovative planning, for the project’s safe and timely execution. The use of MEGI allows a cleaner fuel technology with a significant reduction in environmental emissions, cleaner burning engines with potential to increase mean time between maintenance, provide flexibility of fuel supply to react to market changes and reduced bunkering activities which in turn will offer operations and marine risk reduction. Not only will this pilot MEGI retrofit result in greatly reduced emissions but also, it will allow the converted vessel to operate with maximum flexibility in a safe and sustainable manner, enabling the vessel’s engines to meet current and future emissions standards set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Shell Shell, in collaboration with Emco Wheaton, Ampo, Ledeen and Doedijns, has developed a new technology that can help make the delivery of natural gas from Floating Storage and Regasification Units (“FSRUs”) to shore fundamentally safer. When an FSRU is moored at a jetty, loading arms are usually used to transfer the high pressure gas to shore. In case of extreme weather conditions or a nearby incident, the arms may have to be disconnected quickly and automatically in a safe manner to prevent damage. Such disconnection is usually facilitated by an emergency release system or “ERS”. An important factor to be taken into account in the design of an emergency release system for FRSUs is that the system operates with pressurised gas. When gas is compressed, its potential pressure energy increases considerably (in proportion to the volume and pressure levels). A sudden, uncontrolled, release of such energy can have serious consequences. Therefore, an FRSU transfer system should not disconnect when under pressure; instead adequate and controlled depressurisation must take place before the system is disconnected. In order to address this risk, Shell, with input from Emco Wheaton, Ampo, Ledeen and Doedijns, has developed a high pressure emergency release system (HP ERS) that aims to isolate, depressurise and disconnect quickly and reliably in an emergency situation. A new design feature – a pressure-gated link – has been developed to prevent the ERS coupler from opening when the system is under pressure, using the pressure itself as the driving force, via a pneumatic connection, that physically prevents its activation. The new high pressure emergency release system has undergone rigorous design review and testing in accordance with international standards. At a remote location – an abandoned military range formerly used for rocket testing – real operating conditions were simulated, allowing a full-scale system to be tested safely and comprehensively at high pressure. All testing activities were successfully completed and certified by the independent accreditation body TUV Rhineland. The components and architecture design of the new high pressure emergency release system allow it to go beyond the International Electrotechnical Commission’s (IEC) requirements for Safety Integrity Level (SIL) classification, to increase reliability. Data gathered during testing indicates the system has a lower probability of failure on demand (PFD) and significantly higher spurious fault tolerance (SFT) than other existing designs. Furthermore, the high pressure emergency release system has been dev eloped as a modular and fully standalone design which offers easy project implementation. With use of the HP ERS, the complete arm package is lighter and simpler. These features make the HP ERS potentially more competitive than other high pressure gas arm solutions incorporating existing ERS designs. Overall, the new high pressure emergency release system provides a very competitive solution to help assure safe floating storage and regasification operations, a critical link in the gas value chain.  

Teekay Teekay this year took delivery and started operating the world’s first LNG tankers with dual-fuel slow speed diesels (as opposed to medium speed DFDE) reducing the daily fuel consumption to the coveted 100mt HFOE.

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