At the end of May, work on the first of two combination container and roll-on/roll-off (ConRo) ships in Crowley's Commitment Class was nearing completion at the VT Halter Marine shipyard in Pascagoula, Miss., and the ship was preparing for service in the Jones Act trade between the U.S. mainland and Puerto Rico.
In April, the ship - El Coquí - received its first load of liquefied natural gas (LNG) fuel. Making the fill-up possible were Crowley partners Eagle LNG and Clean Energy, who together loaded around 410,000 gallons of LNG on 41 trailers, which were trucked from their respective LNG plants to VT Halter Marine.
The ship's cryogenic, vacuum-insulated system keeps the LNG in a frigid state, around minus 260 degrees fahrenheit, until it is ready for use.
Going forward, Eagle LNG's new liquefaction facility, located near Jacksonville, Fla., will exclusively support the fuel needs for El Coquí and sister ship Taíno. Both Commitment Class ships are manned in all licensed positions by American Maritime Officers.
To meet these demands, Eagle LNG and Crowley's LNG engineering team together constructed a dockside LNG fuel depot at the company's leased property at the JAXPORT Talleyrand Marine Terminal that will provide faster, more efficient fueling. This facility includes two large tanks with a capacity of about 500,000 gallons. These tanks are filled just prior to vessel arrival and provide fast and efficient bunkering direct to the vessel. This location, which uses cutting edge technology, was also engineered to feature a compact footprint specifically for ship bunkering operations.
The liquefaction facility at Maxville, Fla., about 25 miles from the Talleyrand terminal, has the capacity to produce up to 200,000 gallons of LNG per day, and has a one-million-gallon storage tank and a modern system to load fuel into ISO containers for truck delivery to the port.
Built in the U.S. and operated in the Jones Act trade, Crowley's Commitment Class ships will offer optimal performance and safety while setting new standards for environmentally responsible shipping. Their use of LNG will result in a significant reduction of emissions as compared to existing fossil fuels.