Tärntank: Powering the energy transition with biogas

Claes Möller, CEO of Tärntank Ship Management AB, discusses the Danish company’s latest innovations in clean shipping with Bengt Sangberg, Bureau Veritas Marine’s Chief Executive of the Nordics.


Claes Möller
CEO of Tärntank Ship Management AB

BS: Can you tell us about Tärntank’s latest cutting-edge vessels?

CM: In November, we placed an order for two 15,000-DWT liquefied biogas/liquefied natural gas- powered (LBG/LNG) product and chemical tankers with AVIC Dingheng Shipbuilding. Designed by Kongsberg Maritime, this is the second series of ships we have ordered from Chinese shipbuilders. These latest vessels can run on four different types of fuel – LBG, LNG, MGO and LSHFO – making them environmentally friendly and economical.

In addition, the vessels can run on battery power, which replaces the auxiliary systems when the ships are running on low power (e.g. when entering and leave harbors). Having batteries also allows the vessels to connect to shore power while docked.

BS: Why did you choose LBG as a fuel source for this series of ships?

CM: Our decision to include biogas in the fuel mix for our hybrid ships is based on our commitment to transitioning to clean energy, reaching our sustainability targets as well as IMO’s. Mixing LBG with LNG was an obvious step for us, as the two fuels can be safely combined without any structural changes being made to the engine. Moreover, the fuel supply chain for these hybrid vessels, which will operate in the Baltic and North Nordic Seas, is well developed, as Nordic countries have been actively investing in green technology for years.

BS: What challenges did you face with this project?

With hybrid ships, safety is a key concern. For example, the proximity of gas to batteries can create security risks due to the possibility of electrical fires. We had to conduct extensive risk assessments during planning and design phases to ensure our ships would be safe and compliant.

BS: How was Bureau Veritas able to support you in developing these vessels?

Bureau Veritas’ Shanghai office provided us with design approval, and their experts will conduct on-site surveys throughout construction. Once the vessels are operational, Bureau Veritas’ teams in the Nordic region will take care of annual surveys and inspections.

We have a longstanding relationship with Bureau Veritas, and are confident in their expertise. As a classification society, Bureau Veritas has a deep understanding of regulatory compliance, and a strong background in working with alternative fuels, which were indispensable for this project.