Crowley to launch second LNG-powered ship for stateside-Puerto Rico trade
SAN JUAN – Crowley Maritime Corp.’s Taíno – the second of two of the world’s first combination container/roll on-roll off (ConRo) ships powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) – which it took delivery of in December, made its maiden voyage Tuesday.
Taíno joins sister ship El Coquí, which was delivered in July, in providing shipping services between Jacksonville, Fla., and San Juan, Puerto Rico. The milestone marks the “final chapter in construction of Crowley’s $550 million investment in the two newly built, Commitment Class ships and associated port upgrades,” the shipper said, adding that the ships and port facilities “have elevated the company’s Puerto Rico supply chain services to world-class standards….”
The new ships, “built specifically for the Puerto Rico trade, are 219.5 meters (720 feet), 26,500 deadweight tons (DWT), and can transport up to 2,400 twenty-foot-equivalent container units (TEUs) at a cruising speed of 22 knots. A wide range of container sizes and types can be accommodated, including 53-foot by 102-inch-wide, high-capacity containers, up to 300 refrigerated containers, and a mix of about 400 cars and larger vehicles in the enclosed and ventilated Ro/Ro decks. This type of shipboard garage is offered exclusively by Crowley in the trade,” the company explained.
“I want to congratulate and thank all the men and women at Crowley and VT Halter Marine who helped to bring these marvelous new ships to life,” said Tom Crowley, company chairman and CEO. “They are shining examples of maritime innovation and craftsmanship available right here in the United States thanks to the Jones Act.”
“From a business standpoint, Taíno and El Coquí are key components of our integrated logistics offerings that are bringing speed to market and creating a competitive advantage for our customers in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean,” Crowley said. “With our own vessels and proprietary transportation and distribution network, we’re reducing friction and complexity while increasing the velocity of customers’ goods moving to market and reducing their landed costs.”
Construction was managed in the shipyard by Crowley Solutions. This team included naval architects and engineers from company subsidiary Jensen Maritime.
“Taíno is named for the native Puerto Ricans who lived off the land with great appreciation and respect for their environment, and El Coquí is named for the popular indigenous frog on the island,” a release reads.
“Fueling the ships with LNG reduces emissions significantly, including a 100-percent reduction in sulphur oxide (SOx) and particulate matter (PM); a 92-percent reduction in nitrogen oxide (NOx); and a reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2) of more than 35 percent per container, compared with current fossil fuels,” according to Crowley.
The company said its Isla Grande terminal upgrades included “a new 900-foot-long, 114-foot-wide concrete pier and associated dredging needed to accommodate the two new ships; three new ship-to-shore gantry cranes; expanding terminal capacity for handling refrigerated containers; paving 15 acres to accommodate container stacking; adding containers and associated handling equipment to its fleet; installing a new electrical substation to provide power for the new gantry cranes; constructing a new seven-lane exit gate for increased efficiency; installing hardware required for a new, state-of-the-art terminal operating software system, and more.”