A series of four LNG carriers being built by the Hudong-Zhongua Shipbuilding yard in China will feature Wartsila LNG reliquefaction plants and gas handling systems.

The ships are owned by Bermuda based Teekay Corporation, China LNG Shipping (CLNG), CNOOC Energy Technology Co of China, and BW Gas of Norway. The contracts with Wartsila were issued by Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding and were signed during the fourth quarter.

The award of these contracts is a significant breakthrough into the Chinese market for Wartsila LNG reliquefaction plants and gas handling systems for LNG carriers, while at the same time emphasising the company’s position as the market leader in supplying these solutions.

The Wartsila solutions will provide the owners with both economic and technical benefits. The reliquefaction plant will reliquefy 70% of the boil-off gas from the ships’ LNG cargo and return it to the cargo tanks, while the balance is fed by the gas handling system to the engines for propulsion purposes. The system is pre-fabricated in skid modules for easy onboard installation and hook-up. It can be stopped when the cargo pumps are in operation, thereby reducing the need for extra generator capacity. No extra personnel are required for operation and maintenance.

Wartsila is the market leader in cargo handling technology for LNG carriers and has an extensive reference base with 35 systems already in operation, and a total of eight new systems to be delivered to customers in China, South Korea and Japan. Wartsila is also the only company able to offer solutions throughout the entire gas handling chain and to cater for all types of carriers, from the smallest size LPG carriers for coastal transport to the largest LNG carriers. The company’s solutions cover everything from loading the gas at the terminal to keeping it safe during freight and unloading it at the final destination. Wartsila’s products all comply with the IMO’s recommendations and regulations.

For both the LNG reliquefaction plant and gas handling system, Wartsila will provide engineering support, system responsibility and associated process guarantees.

“Wartsila was selected because we were able to offer the best technical solution with the lowest capital and operational expenditures. Our in-house know-how and experience is unmatched in the industry, which is why the leading gas carrying operators consistently opt for Wartsila’s state-of-the-art solutions,” says Mr Timo Koponen, Vice President, Flow and Gas Solutions, Wartsila Ship Power.

The first of the 174,000m3 LNG carriers is scheduled for delivery in September 2017, with two to follow in 2018 and the last ship in January 2019.