Chinese Shipbuilders seek new inroads in Arctic shipping
The prospects of hydrocarbons, mineral resources, and transarctic shipping are drawing more actors to the far north. China’s state-owned shipbuilders are positioning themselves to meet this demand.
Subsidiaries of the newly-merged China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC) debuted two ship designs earmarked for operations in polar conditions. Hudong-Zhonghua Shipyard, a major shipyard based in Shanghai, displayed a model of its ice-capable liquefied natural gas (LNG) carrier design.
It is designed to meet the requirements for an Arc7 ice class-notation, following the Russian classification system, which means that it can operate independently in moderate ice conditions. The proposed vessel would be able to break ice up with 2.1 meters thick and hold a speed of around 5.5 knots in 1.5 meters thick ice.
The company provided ice basin facilities for model testing — a crucial infrastructure for developing polar-capable ships as it allows for the testing of hull configurations in different ice conditions. Hudong-Zhonghua also contracted the Russian Krylov Research Center to help optimize the design before the second round of tests at Aker Arctic’s facilities. In December 2018, the design received approval in principle by DNV GL and Lloyd’s Register.
Maritime Business World