RINA issues Approval in Principle for WIST™, a SWATH LNG bunkering vessel developed by CMIT-Europe, first of its kind in the world.
The unit features innovative technology for the transport of LNG in adverse weather conditions, indeed WIST means Weather Independent Shuttle Tanker.
The use of LNG power on board ships is still limited due to the difficulties of refueling in many operational areas and the lack of a widespread distribution network.
For what concerns the Mediterranean area, one of the most efficient and immediate solution is to “bring” the fuel directly to the end user and, therefore, to the ship that needs to refuel.
The transportation of LNG with the consequent refueling operation between two ships is an extremely delicate operation, which requires a unit capable of moving a large amount of gas through the waves of the Mediterranean Sea and, once it reaches destination, supply the client ship.
SWATH (Small Waterplane Area Twin Hull) are Twin Hull units characterized by a small waterplane area that allows them to eliminate most of the wave induced motions during navigation and refueling operations.
CMIT-Europe has developed a SWATH ship project with the following features:
• Ability to navigate in adverse marine weather conditions, to reach the ships of the client with almost any conditions expected in the coastal Mediterranean Sea areas and to ensure safe refueling operations.
• Great static and dynamic stability, which makes it possible to safely board another ship to transfer gas.
• A side height that is enough to receive gas from the reference FSRU.
• Ensure the transport of at least 2000m3 of LNG at an adequate speed, around 15kn even in adverse sea conditions, being able to easily reach any point of the Mediterranean Sea.
The unit features innovative technological characteristics, among which:
• LNG bunkering in the design limit sea conditions.
• Adoption of solutions to integrate hull arrangement solutions typical of a High-Speed Craft with those necessary for LNG bunkering operations.
• Arrangement and scantlings of the SWATH solution.
The above features require specific technical considerations to correctly implement the applicable rule requirements, both from the Class and Statutory point of view.
In consideration of the abovementioned innovative aspects, the reference documentation, provided by CMIT-Europe, has been examined by RINA for the purpose of an Approval in Principle, based on the specific “RINA Guide for Approval in Principle”.
Upon the positive results of the extensive analyses, RINA has issued a certificate of Approval in Principle for the unit. The certification confirms the validity of the project for a solution that is expected to offer great advantages in the diffusion of LNG power on board ships.

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