Furthermore the new vessel is predicted to incorporate lower build and operating costs.

Savings in build cost will be achieved by avoiding to fit a ballast water treatment system (BWTS), thus not having to comply with the Performance Standard for Protective Coatings (PSPC) for ballast tanks, ballast piping, pumps and values.

Operational savings will be secured from not having to run and maintain a BWTS, ballast systems and maintain ballast tank coatings.

Lower fuel consumption is also predicted, compared to ‘standard’ designs, as well as lower LNG boil-off due to the GTT membrane, compared to a Type C tank.

Ma Yingbin, Vice Chief Engineer, Dalian, stated: “While we are still in the initial stage of the project and the design is subject to ongoing change, the initial results are indicating that we will meet our goal of having a ballast-free ship that is equal to, or better than existing conventional designs. The cumulative improvements in operating costs coming from the combination of the various innovations and new ideas applied to the design are better than we anticipated, although we should be mindful that this is only the preliminary results phase and we need phase two to further refine and validate the design, we are hopeful this will result in more efficient small-scale LNG carriers.”

From his part, David Colson, Commercial VP of GTT, added that the first results show that the ballast-free design can also reduce the number of cargo tanks, handling equipment and engine power.