The final vessel in a 15-ship series has entered service for the Yamal LNG project ahead of schedule, powered by ABB technology, the global technology company announced yesterday.

The Yakov Gakkel vessel, owned by a joint venture between Teekay LNG Partners and China LNG Partners, joins a fleet of 15 specially designed tankers transporting LNG year-round from Yamal LNG.

Built in less than six years and to ARC7 ice class, ABB said the 15 170,000m3 capacity vessels have opened the Northern Sea Route to commercial gas shipping and significant expanded the navigation period in the direction of the Asia-Pacific region, ensuring year-round transportation of gas to the customers westwards.

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Source: ABB

The Azipod® propulsion system, where the electric drive motor is in a submerged pod outside the ship hull, can rotate 360 degrees to increase manoeuvrability, which is particularly crucial for vessels operating in ice.

ABB has delivered electric propulsion systems to over 90 icebreakers or ice-going vessels with a propulsion power of up to 45 MW.

“The sheer scale of this project and the size of the Azipod units involved make this a milestone for ABB,” said Juha Koskela, Managing Director of ABB Marine & Ports.

“The fuel and emissions-saving capabilities of Azipod electric propulsion have made it the technology of choice for sensitive arctic conditions for almost 30 years, and we were delighted to leverage our experience to deliver safe and reliable technologies ahead of schedule in line with the project’s demands.”