Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) has taken delivery of the second LNG fuelled ropax for Ferry Sunflower.
‘Sunflower Murasaki’, entered service on 14th April. She is a sistership to ‘Sunflower Kurenai’, which began operating in January on the Osaka/Beppu route.
She is a replacement for the ‘Sunflower Cobalt’.
Compared to earlier ferries, the new vessel offers greater capacity and convenience for both cargo and passengers, MOL said.
She has a greater truck capacity and provides a larger, more comfortable room for truck drivers. In addition, the floor area of the Grand Bathroom was doubled and the number of seats in the restaurant was enlarged 1.5 times. Spacious and open public areas including a three-layer atrium were newly created.
In addition, the new ferry is intended to promote and enhance the company’s ‘Casual Cruise Concept’.
The latest environmentally friendly technology has been fitted, including a high-performance dual-fuel engine, which can run on both LNG and heavy fuel oil.
MOL has set a target to achieve net zero GHG emissions by 2050, and is promoting the wider adoption of LNG fuel through development and advancement of an LNG fuel supply system in Japan and overseas.
The company will accelerate its initiatives to reduce total GHG emissions by further expanding the introduction of LNG-fuelled vessels, and contribute to the realisation of a low-carbon, de-carbonised society through the concerted efforts of the entire group, MOL said.
In its ferry business, MOL has decided to integrate the businesses of its wholly owned consolidated subsidiaries, MOL Ferry and Ferry Sunflower, with the new company launching operations on 1st October this year.
The new ferry company plans to operate four LNG-fuelled ferries-adding two more in 2025 to replace current vessels in service on the Oarai/Tomakomai route, in addition to the two vessels already operated by Ferry Sunflower.