Assembly of the hulls of two new LNG transport vessels for Orlen Group has begun. The vessels will be named Józef Piłsudski and Ignacy Jan Paderewski and will enter service in 2025. Thus, the Group’s fleet will increase to six vessels, strengthening the Group’s logistical capabilities for the transportation of liquefied natural gas.
“LNG is one of the pillars of the national energy security system. Last year, Orlen received 62 cargoes of liquefied natural gas at Świnoujście with a total volume of about 4.66 million tonnes of LNG. This means that we used the full capacity of the President Lech Kaczyński terminal, amounting to approximately 6.2 billion cubic metres of gas in a volatile state. Our own fleet of gas carriers strengthens our position on the highly competitive global LNG market, guaranteeing us independence in terms of LNG transportation,” – says Daniel Obajtek, CEO of Orlen.
The vessels under construction are the fifth and sixth of eight LNG carriers that will eventually become part of Orlen Group’s fleet of LNG carriers. The construction of both units at the Korean shipyard Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries has just entered another important stage.
In the case of the gas carrier, which will be named after Marshal Józef Piłsudski, the keel has been laid, which marks the completion of preliminary work on the vessel and the start of hull assembly. In the case of the second, the first cutting of the plates from which the ship will be made took place. This is a symbolic beginning of the construction. The vessel will also bear the name of a prominent figure in Polish history – Ignacy Jan Paderewski.
Like the other ships built for Orlen’s long-term charter at the order of the shipowner Knutsen OAS Shipping, the gas carriers will have a cargo capacity of about 70,000 tonnes of LNG, and their size has been selected so that the vessels can enter almost all terminals in the world. The design and technologies used in the construction of the vessels reduce the environmental impact of their operation. Solutions include integrated energy intake management and a new-generation reliquefaction system (Wartsila Reliq), which enables the recovery of vaporised natural gas without loss to the cargo and while maintaining the energy efficiency of the vessels.
The vessels are scheduled for completion in the first half of 2025. They will then join those already sailing in international waters: Lech Kaczyński, Grażyna Gęsicka, Saint Barbara and Ignacy Łukasiewicz, and like them will be operated under a long-term charter contract with a specialised shipowning company, Knutsen OAS Shipping. The gas carriers will be used for free-on-board (FOB) contracts, under which the buyer, Orlen Group, is responsible for receiving and transporting the cargo.