Canadian shipowning giant Seaspan and the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping have jointly developed a design for a large ammonia-fueled 15,000 teu container vessel, working closely with ship designer Foreship and class society American Bureau of Shipping (ABS).

This marks a significant milestone towards the potential commercialization of the ship design for Seaspan Corporation.

The new concept design offers opportunities which can serve as a foundation for future ammonia-fueled vessel designs. Such opportunities include:

· Achieving safety benefits through fully refrigerated ammonia storage.

· Optimizing the location and volumes of ammonia storage tanks to minimize container slot loss and reduce the risk of tank penetrations while ensuring the vessel’s endurance.

· Providing sufficient space for defined hazardous zones, separate spaces for ammonia-related equipment, and multiple access/egress points.

The new concept design confirms the technical feasibility of large ammonia-fueled container vessels and their ability to achieve acceptable preliminary safety concepts. This has been convincingly demonstrated during the hazard identification (HAZID) workshop and risk mitigation process, resulting in an Approval in Principle (AiP) awarded by ABS.

Maersk Zero Carbon Center pointed out that “Such a milestone boosts confidence in the advancement of the ammonia fuel pathway, unlocking its potential as a viable and eco-friendly option for maritime decarbonization.”

As it is explained, however, despite these promising results the next design stage demands careful consideration, to effectively address the various known challenges and uncertainties that lie ahead, including the importance of human factors, and change management in addition to technical safeguards.